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As the Manager of the Performance sits before the 
curtain on the boards, and looks into the Fair, a feeling of 
profound melancholy comes over him in his survey of the 
bustling place. There is a great quantity of eating and drink- 
ing, making love and jilting, laughing and the contrary, 
smoking, cheating, fighting, dancing, and fiddling: there are 
bullies pushing about, bucks ogling the women, knaves picking 
pockets, policemen on the look-out, quacks {other quacks, 
plague take them !) bawling in front of their booths, and yokels 
looking up at the tinselled dancers and poor old rouged 
tumblers, while the light-fingered folk are operating upon their 
pockets behind. Yes, this is Vanity Fair; not a moral place 
certainly ; nor a merry one, though very noisy. Look at the 
faces of the actors and buffoons when they come off from their 
business ; and Tom Fool washing the paint off his cheeks before 
he sits down to dinner with his wife and the little Jack 
Puddings behind the canvass. The curtain will be up presently, 
and he will be turning over head and heels, and crying, 
^^ How are you ? ^^ 

A man with a reflective turn of mind, walking through 


an exhibition of this sort, will not be oppressed, I take it, by 
his own or other people's hilarity. An episode of humour or 
kindness touches and amuses him here and there; — a pretty 
child looking at a gingerbread stall ; a pretty girl blushing 
whilst her lover talks to her and chooses her fairing ; poor Tom 
Fool, yonder behind the waggon, mumbling his bone with the 
honest family which Uves by his tumbling; — but the general 
impression is one more melancholy than mirthful. When you 
come home, you sit down, in a sober, contemplative, not 
uncharitable frame of mind, and apply yourself to your books 
or your business. 

I have no other moral than this to tag to the present 
story of ^^ Vanity Pair." Some people consider Pairs immoral 
altogether, and eschew such, with their servants and families : 
perhaps they are right. But persons who think otherwise and 
are of a lazy, or a benevolent, or a sarcastic mood, may perhaps 
like to step in for half an hour and look at the performances. 
Th«re are scenes of all sorts; some dreadful combats, some 
grand and lofty horse-riding, some scenes of high life, and some 
of very middling indeed; some love making for the sentimental, 
and some light comic business: the whole accompanied by 
appropriate scenery, and brilliantly illuminated with the 
Author's own candles. 

What more has the Manager of the Performance to say ? — 
To acknowledge the kindness with which it has been received 
in all the principal towns of England through which the Show 
has passed, and where it has been most favourably noticed 
by the respected conductors of the Public Press, and by the 
Nobility and Gentry. He is proud to think that his Puppets 
have given satisfaction to the very best company in this empire. 


The famous little Becky Puppet has been pronounced to be 
uncommonly flexible in the joints and lively on the wire : the 
Amelia Doll, though it has had a smaller circle of admirers, 
has yet been carved and dressed with the greatest care by 
the artist : the Dobbin Figure, though apparently clumsy, yet 
dances in a very amusing and natural manner : the Little Boys^ 
Dance has been liked by some ; and please to remark the richly 
dressed figure of the Wicked Nobleman, on which no expense 
has been spared, and which Old Nick will fetch away at the 
end of this singular performance. 

And with this, and a profound bow to his patrons, the 
Manager retires, and the curtain rises. 


JuTie 28, 1848. 









6. — VAUXHALL 43 








14. — MISS CRAWLEY AT HOME • • ' • 114 



15. — IN WHICH Rebecca's husband appeabs for a short time • . • 129 

16. — the letter on the pincushion 137 

17. — HOW captain dobbin bought a piano 144 

19. — miss CRAWLET at NURSE 161 

20. — in which captain dobbin ACTS AS the messenger of htmen • .170 










29.— BRUSSELS 246 

30. — ^''THE girl I LEFT BEHIND MB " 257 



33. — IN WHICH MISS Crawley's relations are very anxious about her . 289 
34. — JAMES Crawley's pipe is put out •••*••• 298 

35. — WIDOW AND mother ....»«•••• ^^^ 

36.— HOW TO LITE well ON NOTHING A-YEAR «... a » 321 




58. — A FAMILY IN A VERT SMALL WAT . . . . . . ,541 

59. — A CYNICAL CHAPTER • . . . . 553 






45. — BETWEEN HAMFIiraiRE AND^LONDON . . * 402 


47. — GAUNT HOUSE 417 












57. — EOTHEN ^13 




59.— THE OLD PUNO . . . . , 530 



62. — AM RHBIN 557 




66. — AMANTIUM IRJE 598' 




The Letter before Waterloo Frontlipiece. 

Vignette Title-page 

Rebecca's Farewell 7 

Mr. Joseph entangled 32 

Mr. Joseph in a State of Excitement 50 

Rebecca makes Acquaintance with a lite Baronet 59 

Miss Sharp in her School-Room 80 

Miss Crawley's affectionate Relatives 89 

Mr. Osborne's Welcome to Amelia 109 

Lieutenant Osborne and his ardent Lote-Letters 113 

The Note on the Pincushion 140 

An Elephant for Sale 145 

Mr. Sedlet at the Coffee-Housb 172 

Miss Swartz rehearsing for the Drawing-Room 181 

Ensign Stubble practising the Art of War 207 

A Family Party at Brighton 213 

Mrs. O'Dowd at the Flower Market 242 

Mrs. Osborne's Carriage stopping the Way . . • . . 255 



Venus preparing the Armour op Mars 257 

Mr. Jos shates off his Mustachios 2/9 

Mr. James's Pipe put out 307 

Major Sugarplums 319 

Mrs. Rawdon's Departure prom Paris 327 

Georgy makes Acquaintance with a Waterloo Man . . . .340 

The Ribbons Discovered in the Fact 359 

Sir Pin's last Stage 362 

Gloryina tries her Fascination on the Major 387 

The Arriyal at Queen's Crawley . . ^ . . . . . 400 

Becky in Lombard-Street , . 433 

Georgy goes to Church genteelly •...••.. 448 

The Triumph OF .Clytemnestra ^ .. » • 458 

Colonel Crawley is wanted , . , . . , , * ^ 163 

Sir Pitt's Study Chair ...•...,., 482 

Georgy a Gentleman - . 562 

A Meeting ............. 525 

Mr. Jos's Hookahbadar ^,653 

A fine Summer Evening • , <• 560 

Jos performs a Polona>se ••••....,. -569 

Becky's Second Appearance in the Character of CLYTEMNiSTftA . . 623 

Virtue Rewarded ; a Booti! in Vanity Fair ...... 6*24 



■■■■■/ r 'f' 




HILE the present century was in 
its teens, and on one sun-shiny 
morning in June, there drove 
up to the great iron gate of Miss 
Pinkerton's academy for young 
ladies, on Chiswick Mall, a large 
family coach, with two fat horses 
in blazing harness, driven by a 
fat coachman in a three-cornered 
hat and wig, at the rate of four 
miles an hour. A black servant, 
who reposed on the box beside 
the fat coachman, uncurled his 
bandy legs as soon as the equi- 

^>age drew up opposite Miss Pinkcrton's shining brass plate, and as he 

)\Jled the beU, at least a score of young heads ware seen peering out of 
he narvow windows of the stately old brick house. Nay, the acute 

>bserver might have recognised the liitk red nose of good-natured Miss 

Jemima I^nkerton herself, rising over some geranium-pots in the window 

mF that lady's own drawing-room. 

" It is Mrs. Sedley's coach, sister," said Miss Jemima. ** Sambo, the 

olack servant, has just rung the beU; and the coachman has a new red 


" Have you completed all the necessary preparations incident to Miss 

Sedley's departure. Miss Jemima?" asked Miss Pinkerton herself, that 

iiajestic lady, the Semiramis of Hammersmith, the friend of Doctor 

Johnson, the correspondent of Mrs. Chapone herself. 
"The girls wore up at four this morning, packing her trunks,' sister," 

replied Mss Jemima ; "we have made her a bow-pot." 


" Say a bouquet, sister Jemima, 'tis more genteel." 

" Well, a booky as big almost as a hay-stack ; I have put up two 
bottles of the gillyflower-water for Mrs. Sedley, and the receipt for 
making it, in Amelia's box." 

" And I trust, Miss Jemima, you have made a copy of Miss Sedley 'a 

accoimt. This is it, is it ? Yery good — ^ninety-three pounds, four shil- 
lings. Be kind enough to address it to John Sedley, Esquire, and to seal 
this billet which I have written to his lady." 

In Miss Jemima's eyes an autograph letter of her sister. Miss Pinker- 
ton, was an object of as deep veneration, as would have been a letter from 
a sovereign. Only when her pupils quitted the establishment, or when 
they were about to be married, and once, when poor Miss Birch died of 
the scarlet fever, was Miss Pinkerton known to write personally to the 
parents of her pupils ; and it was Jemima's opinion that if anythmg could 
console Mrs. Birch for her daughter's loss, it would be that pious and 
eloquent composition in which Miss Pinkerton annoimced the event. 

Li the present instance Miss Pinkerton's " billet " was to the following 

^ The MaU, Chivmck, June IS, 18—. 
"Madam, — ^After her six years' residence at the Mall, I have the 
honour and happiness of presenting Miss Amelia Sedley to her parents, 


as a young lady not unworthy to occupy a fitting position in their polished 
and refined circle. Those mtues winch characterise the young English 
gentlewoman, those accomplishments which become her birth and station, 
will not be found wanting in the amiable Miss Sedley, whose industry 
and obedience have endeared her to her instructors, and whose delightfuJ 
sweetness of temper has charmed her a^ed and her youthful companions. 

" In music, in dancing, in orthography, in every variety of embroidery 
and needle- work, she wiU be found to have realised her fiiends'/o«^fe*^ 
mshe%. In geography there is still much to be desired; and a careful 
and undeviating use of the backboard, for four hours daily during the 
next three years, is recommended as necessary to the acquirement of that 
dignified deportment and carriage^ so requisite for every young lady oi fashion. 

" In the principles of religion and morality. Miss Sedley will be found 
worthy of an establishment which has been honoured by the presence of 
Tlie Great Lexicographer, and the patronage of the admirable Mrs. Cha- 
pone. In leaving the Mail, Miss Amelia carries with her the hearts of her 
companions, and the affectionate regards of her mistress, who has the 
honour to subscribe herself, 

" Madam, 
" Tour most obliged humble servant, 

" Baebaea Pinkeeton." 

" P.S. Miss Sharp accompanies Miss Sedley. It is particularly re- 
quested that Miss Sharp's stay in Eussell Square may not exceed ten days* 
The family of distinction with whom she is engaged, desire to avail them- 
selves of her services as soon as possible." 

This letter completed. Miss Pinkerton proceeded to write her own name,, 
and Miss Sedley's, in the fly-leaf of a Johnson's Dictionary — the inter- 
esting work which she invariably presented to her scholars, on their 
departure firom the Mall. On the cover was inserted a copy of " Lines 
addressed to a young lady on quitting Miss Pinkerton's school, at the 
MaU ; by the late revered Doctor Samuel Johnson." In fact, the Lexi- 
cographer's name was always on the lips of this majestic woman, and a 
visit he had paid to her was the cause of her reputation and her fortune. 

Being commanded by her elder sister to get " the Dictionary " from the 
cupboard. Miss Jemima had extracted two copies of the book from the 
receptacle in question. When Miss Pinkerton had finished the inscrip- 
tion in the first, Jemima, with rather a dubious and timid air, handed her 
the second. 

" For whom is this. Miss Jemima ? " said Miss Pinkerton, with awful 

"For Becky Sharp," answered Jemima, trembling very much, and 
blushing over her withered face and neck, as she turned her back on 
her sister. "For Becky Sharp : she's going too." 

"MISS JEMIMA ! " exclaimed Miss Pinkerton, in the largest capitals, 
" Are you in your senses ? Keplace the Dixonary in the closet, and never 
venture to take such a liberty in future." 

"Well, sister, it's only two-and-ninepence, and poor Becky will be 
miserable if she don't get one." 

B 2 


'"Send Mass Sedley instcntly to me," said lEss I4nkerton. And 90 
' v ie atmiu g not to say anotlicr word, poor Jennma terotted off, exeee&igfy 
ftorried and nervous. 

Miss Sedley's papa was a merchant in Ixmdon, and a man of some 
wesMi ; whereas Miss Sharp was an articled pupil, for whom Miss Pink- 
erton had done, as she thought, quite *enoQgh, withocrt conferring upon her 
at parting, the high honour of the Dixonaiy. 

Although Schoohnistresses' letters wre to be trusted no more nor less 
than churchyard epitaphs; yet, as it sometimes happens that a person 
departs this Kfe, who is really deserving t)f all the praises the stone-cutter 
csrves over Tiis bones; who is a good Christian, agood parent, child, wife or 
^husband; who actually does leave a disconsolate family to mourn his loss ; 
BO in academies of the male and female sex it occurs every now and then, 
"that ihe pupil is fully worthy of the praises bestowed by tbe disinterested 
instructor. Now, Miss Amelia Sedley was a young lady of this singular 
species ; and deserved not only all that Miss Pinkerton said in her praise, 
^t liad many charming qualities which that pompous old Minerva of a 
woman could not see, from the differences of rank and age between her 
pupil and herself. 

,!FoT she could not only sing like a lark, or a Mrs. Billington, and dance 
like HilKsberg or Parisot ; and embroider beautifully ; and spell as weU as 
Hie Bixonary itself; but she had such a kindly, smiling, tender, geiitle, 
.generous heart of her own, as won the love of everybody who came near 
her, from Minerva herself down to the poor girl in the scullery, and ihe 
one-eyed tartwoman's daughter, who was penmtted to vend her wares onee 
a week to the young ladies in the Mall. She had twelve intimate and 
bosom friends out of the twenty-four young ladies. Even envious Miss 
Briggs never spoke ill of her : high and mighty Miss Saltire (Lord Dexter's 
grand-daughter) allowed that her iigure was genteel: and as for Miss 
Svrartz, the rich woolly-haired mulatto from St. Kitt's, on the day Amelia 
went away, she was in such a passion of tears, that they were obliged to 
send for Dr. Ploss, and half tipsify her with salvolatile. Miss Pinkerton's 
id;tachment was, as may be supposed, from the high position and eminent 
virtues of that lady, calm and dignified; but Miss Jemima had already 
blubbered several times at the idea of Amelia's departure ; and, but for fear 
of her sister, would have gone off in downright hysterics, Kke the heiress 
(wbo paid double) of St. Kitt's. Such luxury of grief, however, is only 
allowed to parlour-boarders. Honest Jemima had all the bills, and the 
washing, and the mending, and the puddings, and the plate and crockery, 
and. the servants to superintend. But why speak about her? It is 
probable that we shall not hear of her again from this moment to the end 
of time, and that when the great filligree iron gates are once closed on 
'her, she and her awful sister will never issue therefrom into this little 
w^rld of histoi^. 

But as we are to see a great deal of Amelia, there is no harm in saying 
at the outset of our acquaintance, that she was one of the best and dearest 
creatures that ever lived ; and a great merey it is, both in life and in 
novels, which (and the latter especially) abound in villains of the most 
sombre sort, that we are to have for a constant companion, so guileless 

A NOYEli W gm oro A HEBO. 

and goodrnatozed a person. Asi^ is not a hJBrome, there i» no mod to- 
desenbe her person ; indeed I am afiaid that her noae* was nthec shoit 
than otherwise, and her cheeks a great deal too ronad and red finr & 
herdae; but her hce blushed with reey health, and her Hps with the 
freshest of smiles, and she had a pair of eyes, which sparkled widk ths 
bvightest and honestest good-^hnmour, except indeed when they filled witii 
tears, and that was a great deal too often ; for the silly thing would ay 
over a dead canary-bird, or over a moose, that the cat haply had seised 
upon, or over the end of a novel, were it ever so stupid ; and as for siqring 
an unkind word to her, were any one hard-hearted enough to do so, — 
why, so much the worse for them. Even Miss Pinkerton, that austere 
and god-like woman, ceased scolding her after the iirst time, and though 
she no more comprehended sensibility than she did Algebra, gave all 
masters and teachers particular orders to treat Miss Sedley with the utmoat 
gentleness, aa harsh treatment was injurious to her. 

So that when the day of departure came, between her two customs of 
laughing and crying, Miss Sedley was greatly puzzled how to act. She waa 
glad to go home, and yet most woMly sad at leaving schooL For three 
days before, little Laura Martin, the orphan, followed her about, likie a 
little dog. She had to make and receive at least fourteen presents, — ^to 
make fourteen solemn promises of writing every week : " Send my letters 
under cover to my grandpapa, the Earl of Dexter,*' said Miss Saltire (who, 
by the way was rather shabby) : " Never mind the postage, but write every 
^J> JOVL dear darling," said the in^tuous and wooUy-headed, but gener- 
ous and affectionate Miss Swaxtz ; and little Laura Martin (who was just 
in round hand) took her Mend's hand and said, looking up in her face 
wistfiiHy, " Ainelia, when I write to you, I shall call you Mamma." All 

which details, I have no doubt, Jones, who reads this book at his Club, 


will pronounce to be excessively fooKsh, trivial, twaddling, and ultra-senti- 
mental. Yes; I can see Jones at this minute (rather flushed with his joint 
of mutton and half-pint of wine), taking out his pencil and scoring under 
the words " foolish, twaddling," 8m;., and adding to them his own remark 
of " quite true,^* Well, he is a lofty man of genius, and admires the great 
and heroic in life and novels ; and so had better take warning and go 

Well, then. The flowers, and the presents, and the trunks, and bonnet- 
boxes of Miss Sedley having been arranged by Mr. Sambo in the carriage, 
together with a very small and weather-beaten old cow's-skin tnmk 
with Miss Sharp's card neatly nailed upon it, which was delivered by 
Sambo with a grin, and packed by the coachman with a corresponding 
sneer — ^the hour for parting came; and the grief of that moment was 
considerably lessened by the admirable discourse which Miss Pinkerton 
addressed to l\er pupil. Not that the parting speech caused Amelia to 
philosophise, or that it armed her in any way with a calmness, the result 
of argument ; but it was intolerably dull, pompous, and tedious ; and 
having the fear of her schoolmistress greatly before her eyes, Miss Sedley 
did not venture, in her presence, to give way to any ebuflitions of private 
grief. A seed-cake and a bottle of wine were produced iq the drawing- 
room, as on the solemn occasions of the visit of parents, and these reifresh- 
ments being partaken of, Miss Sedley was at liberty to depart. 

" You 'U go in and say good by to Miss Pinkerton, Becky ?" said Miss 
Jemima to a young lady of whom nobody took any notice, and who was 
coming down stairs with her own bandbox. 

" I suppose I must," said Miss Sharp calmly, and much to the wonder 
of Miss Jemima ; and the latter having knocked at the door, and receiving 
permission to come in. Miss Sharp advanced in a very imconcemed man- 
ner, and said in French, and with a perfect accent, " Mademoiselle, je viens 
vous faire mes adieux." * 

" Miss Pinkerton did not understand French ; she only directed those 
who did : but biting her lips and throwing up her venerable and Koman- 
nosed head, (on the top of which figured a large and solemn turban,) she 
said, " Miss Sharp, I wish you a good morning." As the Hammersmith 
Semiramis spoke, she waved one hand both by way of adieu, and to give 
Miss Sharp an opportunity of shaking one of the fingers of the hand which 
was left out for that purpose. 

Miss Sharp only folded her own hands with a very frigid smile and bow, 
and quite declined to accept the proffered honour ; on which Semiramis 
tossed up her turban more indignantly than ever. In fact, it was a little 
battle between the young lady and the old one, and the latter was worsted. 
" Heaven bless you, my child," said she, embracing Amelia, and scowling 
the while over the girFs shoulder at Miss Sharp. " Come away, Becky," 
said Miss Jemima, pulling the young woman away in great alarm, and the 
drawing-room 4oor closed upon them for ever. 

Then came the struggle and parting below. Words refuse to tell it. 
All the servants were there in the hall — all the dear friends — all the yoimg 
ladies — ^the dancing-master who had just arrived ; and there was such a 
scufBLing, and hugging, and kissing, and crying, with the hysterical yooj^s 




of Miss Swartz, the parlour-boarder, from her room, as no pen can depict, 
and as the tender heart would fain pass over. The embracing was over ; 
they parted — ^that is, Miss Sedley parted from her friends. Miss Sharp 
iiad demiprely entered the carriage some minutes before. Nobody cried for 
leaving lier. 

Sambo of the bandy-legs slammed the carriage-door on his young weep- 
ing mistress. He sprang up behind the carriage. *' Stop ! " cried Miss 
Jemima, rushing to the gate with a parcel. 

" It 's some sandwiches, my dear," said she to Amelia. " You may 
be hungry, you know ; and Becky, Becky Sharp, here 's a book for you 
that my sister — that is, I, — Johnson's Dixonary, you know ; you mustn't 
leave us without that. Good by. Drive on, coachman. God bless youl" 

And the kind creature retreated into the garden, overcome with emotions. 

But, lo ! and just as the coach drove off, Miss Sharp put her pale face 
out of the window, and actually flung the book back into the garden. 

This abnost caused Jemima to . faint with terror. " Well, I never," — 
said she — "what an audacious " — Emotion prevented her from completing 
either sentence. The carriage rolled away ; the great gates were closed ; 
the beU rang for the dancing lesson. The world is before the two young 
kdies ; and so, farewell to Chiswick Mall. 




' BEN Miss Sharp had perfonned the hemcal act mentioned 
in the last chapter, and had seen the Dixonaiy iiying 
over the pavement of the little garden, fall at length at 
the feet of the astonished Miss Jemima, the young lady's 
countenance, which had before worn an almost lind look 
of hatred, assumed a smile that perhaps was scarcely 
more agreeable, and she sank back in the carriage in 
an easy frame of mind, saying, — " So much for the 
Dixonary ; and, thank God, I 'm out of Chiswick." 

Miss Sedley was almost as flurried at the act of defiance as Miss Jemima 
had been ; for, consider, it was but one minute that she had left school, 
and the impressions of six years are not got over in that space of time. 
Nay, with some persons those awes and terrors of youth last for ever and 
ever. I know, for instance, an old gentleman of sixty-eight, who said 
to me one morning at breakfast, with a very agitated countenance, " I 
dreamed last night that I was flogged by Dr. Kame." Fancy had carried 
him back only fifty years in the course of that evening. Dr. Baine and 
his rod were just as awful to him in his heart, then, at sixty-eight, as they 
had been at thirteen. If the Doctor, with a large birch, had appeared 
bodily to him, even at the age of threescgre and eight, and had said in 
awful voice, " Boy, take down your pant * * ? " Well, weU, Miss 
Sedley was exceedingly alarmed at this act of insubordination. 

" How could you do so, Eebecca ? " at last she said, after a pause. 
" Why, do you think Miss Pinkerton will come out and order me back 
to the black-hole ? " said Eebecca, laughing. 

« No : but " 

" I hate the whole house," continued Miss Sharp, in a fiiry. " I hope 
I may never set eyes on it again. I wish it were in the bottom of the 
Thames, I do ; and if Miss Pinkerton were there, I wouldn't pick her out, 
that I wouldn't. how I should like to see her floating in the water 
yonder, turban and all, with her train streaming after her, and her nose 
like the beak of a wherry." 
• " Hush ! " cried Miss Sedley. 

" Why, win the black footman tell tales ? " cried Miss Eebecca, laughing. 
" He may go back and tell Miss Pinkerton that I hate her with all my 
soul ; and I wish he would ; and I wish I had a means of proving it too. 
For two years I have only had insults and outrage from her, I have been 
treated worse than any servant in the kitchen. I have never had a friend 
or a kind word, except from you. I have been made to tend the little girls 


m tbe lofwee scbodroom, mA to tdk SWaeh; to* tiie Ifiases, until I gveir 
sick of mj motliier-tongiie. Bat tlutt tafikiai^ iVeBch ta Miw Vmkatmi 
was capital fan, wasii't it P Slie doean't knoir a wcvd of Erench*, and was 
too proud to c(Mi£s88 it. I believe it was that wUch mads her part with 
me; andso thankHeayenforlrendi. Fwela Fnmce/ FiveVJEmpereiir/ 
Vhe Boimparte I " 

'^ O Eebecca, Eebecca, for shame I " cried Miss Sedley ; for this was 
the greatest blasphemy Bebecca had as yet uttered ; and in those days, in 
England, to say " Long lire Bonaparte T' was as much as to si^ '* Long 
live Lucifer ! " " How can you — how dare you haTe sudi wickec^ 
rerengefdl thoughts ? *' 

" Bevenge may be wicked, but it 's natural," answered Miss Bebecca. 
" I 'm no angel." And, to say the truth, she certainly was not. 

For it may be remarked in the course of this little conversation (which 
took place as the coach rolled along husily by the river side) that though 
Miss Bebecca Sharp has twice had occasion to thank Heaven, it has been, 
in the first place, for ridding her of some person whom she hated, and 
secondly, for enabling her to bring her enemies to some sort of ipen^issiij 
or concision ; neither of which are very amiable motives for religious 
gratitude, or such as would be put forward by persons of a kind and 
placable disposition. Miss Bebecca was not, then, in the least kind or 
placable. All the world used her ill, said this young misanthropist (or 
misogynist, for of the world of men she can be pronounced as yet to have 
had but little experience), and we may be pretty certain that the persona 
of either sex whom all the world treats HI,, deserve entirely the treatment 
they get. The world is a looking-glass, and gives back to every man the 
reflection of his own face. Erown at it, and it wiU in tmn look sourly 
upon you : laugh at it and with it, and it is a jolly kind companion ; and 
so let all young persons take their choice. This is certain, that if the 
world n^lected Miss Sharp, she never was known to have done a good 
action in behalf of anybody; nor can it be expected that twenty-four 
young ladies should all be as amiable as the heroine of this work. Miss Sedley 
(whom we have selected for the very reason that she was the best-natured 
of all, otherwise what on earth was to have |»revented us from putting up 
Miss Swartz, or Miss Crmnp, or Miss Hopkins, as heroine in her place P) 
it could not be expected that every one should be oi the hmnble and gentle 
t^nper of Miss Amelia Sedley ; should take every opportunity to vanquish 
Bebecca's hard-heartedness and ill-humour ; and, by a thousand kind words 
and (^Sces, overcome, for once at least, her hostility to her kind. 

Miss Shai:p's fether was an artist, and in that quality had given lessons 
of drawing at Miss Pinkerton's school He was a clever man ; a pleasant 
cranpanion ; a careless student ; had a great propensity fox running into 
debt, and a partiality for the tavern. When he was drunk, he used to 
beat his wife and daughter ; and the next morning, with a headache, he 
used to rail at the world for its neglect of his genius, and abuse, with a 
good deal of devemess, and sometimes with peilfect reason, the fools, his 
brother painters. As it was with the utmost dlificulty that he could keep 
himself, and as he owed money i<a a mile round Soho, wbere he Itved, he 


thouglit to better Ms drcmnstanoes by marrying a young woman of the 
French nation, who was by profession an opera-girl. The humble calling 
of her female parent, Miss Sharp never alluded to, but used to state subse- 
quently that the Entrechats were a noble family of Gascony, an'd took 
great pride in her descent from thein. And curious it is, that as she 
advanced in life this young lady's ancestors increased in rank and 

Bebecca's mother had had some education somewhere, and her daughter 
spoke French with purity and a Parisian accent. It was in those days 
rather a rare accomplishment, and led to her engagement with the orthodox 
Miss Pinkerton. For her mother being dead, and her father finding him- 
self not likely to recover, after his third attack of delirium iremenSy wrote 
a manly and pathetic letter to Miss Pinkerton, reconmiending the orphan 
child to her protection, and so descended to the grave, after two bailiffs 
had quarrelled over his corpse. Eebecca was seventeen when she came to 
Chiswick, and was boimd over as an articled pupil, her duties being to 
talk French, as we have seen, and her privileges to live cost free ; and, 
with a few guineas a year, to gather scraps of knowledge from the professors 
who attended the school. 

She was small and slight in person ; pale, sandy-haired, and with eyes 
habitually cast down : when they looked up they were very large, odd, and 
attractive ; so attractive, that the Eeverend Mr. Crisp, fresh from Ojdbrd, 
and curate to the Vicar of Chiswick, the Eeverend Mr. Flowerdew, feU in 
love with Miss Sharp ; being shot dead by a glance of her eyes which was 
fired aU the way across Chiswick Church from the school-pew to the 
reading-desk. This infatuated yoimg man used sometimes to take tea 
with Miss Pinkerton, to whom he had been presented by his mamma, and 
actually proposed something like marriage in an intercepted note, which 
the one-eyed applewoman was charged to deliver. Mrs. Crisp was sum- 
moned from Buxton, and abruptly carried off her darling boy ; but the 
idea, even, of such an eagle in the Chiswick dovecot caused a great flutter 
in the breast of Miss Pinkerton, who would have sent away Miss Sharp, but 
that she was bound to her under a forfeit, and who never could thoroughly 
believe the young lady's protestations that she had never exchanged a single 
word with Mr. Crisp, except under her own eyes on the two occasions 
when she had met lum at tea. 

By the side of many tall and bouncing young ladies in the establishment, 
Eebecca Sharp looked like a child. But she had the dismal precocity of 
poverty. Many a dun had she talked to, and turned away from her father's 
door ; many a tradesman had she coaxed and wheedled into g^od-humour, 
and into the granting of one meal more. She sate commo^^y with her 
father, who was very proud of her wit, and heard the talk of many of his 
wild companions — often but iU suited for a girl to hear. But she never 
had been a girl, she said ; she had been a woman since she was eight years 
old. O why did Miss Pinkerton let such a dangerous bird into her cage ? 

The fact is, the old lady thought Eebecca to be the meekest creature in 
the world, so admirably, on the occasions when her father brought her to 
Chiswick, used Eebecca to perform the part of the ingenue. She thought 
her a modest and innocent httle child ; and only a year before the arrange- 



ment by wldch Rebecca had been admitted into her house, and when Eebecca 
was sixteen years old. Miss Pinkerton majestically, and with a little speech, 
made her a present of a doll — ^which was, by the way, the confiscated pro- 
perty of Miss Swindle, discovered surreptitiously nursing it in school- 
hours. How the father and daughter laughed as they trudged home 
together after the evening party, (it was on the occasion of the speeches, 
when all the professors were invited,) and how Miss Pinkerton would have 
raged had she seen the caricature of herself which the little mimic, Rebecca, 
managed to make out of her doll ! She used to go through dialogues 
with it ; it formed the delight of Newman Street, Gerard Street, and the 
artists' quarter : and the young painters, when they came to take their 
gin-and-water with their lazy, dissolute, clever, jovial senior, used regularly 

to ask Rebecca if Miss Pinkerton was at home : she was well known to 
them, poor soul ! as Mr. Lawrence or President West. Once she had the 
honour to pass a few days at Chiswick ; after which she brought back 
Jemima, and erected another doll as Miss Jemmy ; for though that honest 
creature had made and given her jelly and cake enough for three children, 
and a seven-shilling piece at parting, the girl's sense of ridicule was far 

12 VANITY PiilB. 

stronger tluia hor gzaiihide, and Bh& sacnfioed MisB Jeouay q«ste a» 
pitiliSfiBly as lier sistec. 

The catastsophs camey and she was bvongbt to the Mall a» to hsr home. 
HiiS rigid fonnaiity of tlie pkee suffocated her : the prayers and the meaJa, 
the lessoiifl> aad the walks, which were axraaged with a coniveiitaal regu?- 
larity, oppressed her almost beycHid endurance : and she looked back to 
the freedrai and the beggary of the old studio in Sdio with so macb 
regret, that e^eiybody, herself included, fancied she waa consumed with 
grief for her fiBtther. She had a little room in the garret, where the maids 
heard her walking and sobbing at night ; but it was with rage, and not 
with grief. She had not been much of a dissembler, until now h^ loneli^ 
ness taught her to feign. She had never mingled in the society of w(»aen.: 
her father, reprobate as he was, was a man of talent ; his conversation 
was a thousand times more agreeable to her than the talk of such of her 
own sex as she now encountered. The pompous vanity of the old school- 
mistress, the foolish good-humour of her sister, the silly chat and scandal 
of the elder girls, and the frigid correctness of the governesses equally 
annoyed her; and she had no soft maternal heart, this unlucky girl, other- 
wise the prattle and talk of the yoimger children, with whose care she was 
chiefly intrusted, might have soothed and interested her; but she lived 
among them two years, and not one was sorry that she went away. »The 
gentle tender-hearted Amelia Sedley was the only person to whom she could 
attach herself in the least-; and who could help) attaching herself to Amelia ? 

The happiness — ^the sujperior adTantagca ci the- young women round 
about her, gave Eebecca iaexpressible pangs of envy. " What airs that 
girl gives herself, because die is an EarFs granddaughter," she said of one. 
"How they cringe and bow to that Greole^ because oi her hundred 
thousand poands ! I am a thonsand timns cleverer and more charming 
than that creature, for all her weattk. I am as weE bred as the Earl's 
granddaughter, for all her fine pedajgree-; and yet every one passes me by 
here. And yet, when I was at my father's^ did not the men give up their 
gayest baUs and parties in ovdfir ten pass the eveniaag wxiih me ? " She 
determined at any rate to get free from the prison im which she found 
herself, and now began to act for herself, and for the "Smt time to make 
connected plans for the future. 

She took advantage^ therefiore, of the means of study the place offered 
her ; and as she was already a musician and a good KngiiiiBt, she speedily 
went through the little- course of study which was considered necessary for 
ladies in those days. Her music she practised incessantly, and one day, 
when the girls were out, and she had remained at home, she was over- 
heard to play a piece so weU, that Minerva thought wisely, she could 
spare herself the expense of a master for the juniors, and intimated to 
Miss Sharp that she was to instruct them in music for the future. 

The girl reftraed ; and for the first time, and to the astonishment ai the 
majestic mistress of the schod. " I am here to speak Erench with the 
duldren^" Eebeeca said abruptly, "not to teach them m»aic, and save 
money for yon. Give me money, and I will teach them." 

Minerva was obliged to yield, and, of co<uisev disliked her from that day. 
"Eor five-and-thirty yeara^" she said,.. and with great justice, "I never. 

A NoyjEL mvraxBT a hero. 13 

hme seen tlie individual who lias dared in my mm lioBse to i^pitition raj 
anthcvlfcy. I hs^enoonshed a Tiper in my bosom/' 

"'A viper — a liddlecitiok/' said Ifiw Sharp io the ^Id lady, abnoat famfr- 
ing^'witli astflVHskment. "You took me becaaae I was nseiuL. There is no 
question of gvatihide between us. I hate tfaii phu», and want to leave it. 
I will do nothing' here, but what I am <>bliged to 4o." 

It was in Tain that the -old kdy asked her if she was awaie she was 
speaking* to Ifiss Pinkerkm ? Bebecoa braced in her faee, with a horrid 
sarcastic demoniaoal laughter, that almost sent the sdioofamstress into iits. 
•*GKve me a sum of mon^/' said the girl, " and get rid of me— «or, if yon 
like better, get me a good place as goyemess in a nobleman's fimnly — you 
Can do so if you please." And in their further disputes she always 
returned to this point, '^ G^ me a eituation^-^e hate eaeh other, and I 
am readty to go." 

Worthy Miss PinkerUm, althouf h she had a Beman nose and a tnrban, 
and was as tall as a grenadier, and had been up to this time an irreewtftle 
princess, had no will or strength Mke that of her Mttle i^yprentioe, and in 
vain did battle against her, and tried to overawe her. Attempting 4moe 
to scold her in public, Bebecca fait upon the beforewmentioned plan of 
answering her in French, which quite rotited the old cwoman. Li order to 
matntain authority in her school, it became necessary to remove this rebel, 
this monster, this serpent, this &'ebrand; and hearing about this time 
that Sir Pitt Crawley's famity was in want of a governess, she actually 
recommended JSsbb Sharp for the situation, inrebrai^ and serpent that she 
was. " I cannot, certainly," she said, " find fault with Miss Sharp's con- 
duct, except to myself; and must allow that her talents and accom- 
plishments are of a high order. As far as the head goes, at least, she 
does credit to the educational system pursued at my establishment." 

And so the schoolmistress reconciled the recommendation to her con- 
science, and the indentures were cancelled, and the apprentice was free. 
The battle here described m a^few lines, ef course, lasted for some months. 
And as Miss Sedley, being now seventeen years of age, was about to leave 
school, and had a friendship for Miss Sharp, (" 'tis the only point in 
Amelia's behaviour," said JKfioierva, " which has not been satisliEiotory to 
her mistress,") Miss Sharp was invited by her friend to pass a week with 
her at home, before she entered upon h» duties as governess in a private 

Thus the woifld began for these two young ladies. For Amelia »it was 
iquite a new, freiSh, brilliant world, with aU the bloom upon it. It was not 
quite a new one for Rebecca — (indeed, if the truth must be told with 
respect to the Crisp affair, the tart-weman hinted to somebody who took 
an affidavit of the fact to somebody else, that there was a great deal more 
than was made pubHc regarding Mr. Crisp and Miss Sharp, and *hat his 
letter was in answerio anotheir letter). But who can tell you the real truth 
of the matter ? At all events, if Eebecca was not beginning the world, 
she was beginning it over again. 

By the time the young ladies teaohed Kensington tump^, Amelia had 
not forgotten her compamons, but had dried her tears, and had blushed 
very much and been delighted at a young offieer of the Horse GKutrds, who 


spied her as he was riding by, and said, " A dem fine gal, egad ! " and 
before the carriage arrived in Eussell Square, a great deal of conversation 
had taken place about the drawing-room, and whether or not young ladies 
wore powder as well as hoops when presented, and whether she was ta 
have that honour : to the Lord Mayor's ball she knew she was to go. 
And when at length home was reached, Miss Amelia Sedley skipped out on 
Sambo's arm, as happy and as handsome a girl as any in the whole big city 
of London. Both he and coachman agreed on this point, and so did her 
father and mother, and so did every one of the servants in the house, as 
they stood bobbing, and curtseying, and smiling, in the hall, to welcome 
their young mistress. 

You may be sure that she showed Eebecca over every room of the 
house, and everything in every one of her drawers, and her books, and 
her piano, and her dresses, and all her necklaces, brooches, laces, and 
gimcracks. She insisted upon Rebecca accepting the white cornelian and 
the turquoise rings, and a sweet sprigged muslin, which was too small for 
her now, though it would fit her friend to a nicety ; and she determined 
in her heart to ask her mother's permission to present her white Cashmere 
shawl to her friend. Could she not spare it ? and had not her brother 
Joseph just brought her two from India ? 

When Eebecca saw the two magnificent Cashmere shawls which Joseph 
Sedley had brought home to his sister, she said, with perfect truth, " that 
it must be dehghtfiil to have a brother," and easily got the pity of the 
tender-hearted Amelia, for being alone in the world, an orphan without 
friends or kindred. 

" Not alone," said Amelia, " you know, Rebecca, I shall always be your 
friend, and love you as a sister — indeed I will." 

" Ah, but to have parents, as you have — kind, rich, affectionate parents, 
who give you everything you ask for ; and their love, which is more pre- 
cious than all I My poor papa could give me nothing, and I had but two 
frocks in all the world ! And then, to have a brother, a dear brother \ 
Oh how you must love him !" 

Amelia laughed. 

" What ! chn't you love him ? you, who say you love everybody ?" 

" Yes, of course, I do — only — " 

"Only what?" 

" Only Joseph doesn't seem to care* much whether I love him or not. 
He gave me two fingers to shake when he arrived after ten years' absence! 
He is very kind and good, but he scarcely ever speaks to me ; I think he 
loves his pipe a great deal better than his " * * * but here Amelia 
checked herself, for why should she speak ill of her brother ? " He was 
very kind to me as a child," she added ; " I was but five years old when 
he went away." 

" Isn't he very rich ? " said Rebecca. " They say all Indian nabobs are 
enormously rich." 

" I beUeve he has a very large income." 

" And is your sister-ra-law a nice pretty woman P " 

" La ! Joseph is not married," said Amelia, laughing again. 

Perhaps she had mentioned the fact already to Rebecca, but that young 



lady did not appear to liave remembered it ; indeed, vowed and protested 
that she expected to see a nmnber of AmeKa's nephews and nieces. She 
was quite disappointed that Mr. Sedley was not married ; she was sure 
Amelia had said he was, and she doted so on little 'children. 

" I think you must have had enough of them at Chiswick," said Amelia, 
rather wondering at the sudden tenderness on her friend's part ; and indeed 
in later days Miss Sharp would never have committed herself so far as to 
advance opinions, the untruth of which would have been so easily detected. 
But we must remember that she is but nineteen as yet, unused to the art 
of deceiving, poor ionocent creature ! and making her own experience in 
her own person. The meaning of the above series of queries, as trans- 
lated in the heart of this ingenious young woman, was simply this : — * If 
Mr. Joseph Sedley is rich and unmarried, why should I not marry him ? 
I have only a fortnight, to be sure, but there is no harm trying." And she 
determined within herself to make this laudable attempt. She redoubled 
her caresses to Amelia ; she kissed the white cornelian necklace as she put 
it on ; and vowed she would never, never part with it. When the dinner- 
bell rang she went down stairs with her arm round her friend's waist, as 
is the habit of young ladies. She was so agitated at the drawing-room 
door, that she could hardly find courage to enter. " Feel my heart, how 
it beats, dear !" said she to her friend. 

" No, it doesn't," said Amelia. " Come in, don't be frightened. Papa 
wont do you any harm." 

fAf .^^'A. 




^^BY stout, f)iifiy man, in bucksldns and bessiasi 
boots, with several immense neckcloths, that 
rose lalmest to Jiis nose, with a red striped 
waistcoat and an apple green coat with ^eel 
buttons almost as large as crown pieces, (it 
was the morning costume of a dandy or blood 
of those days) was reading the paper by the 
fire when the two girls entered, and bounced 
off his arm-chair, and blushed ^cessivdy, and 
hid his entire fjEice almost in his neckcloths at this appantion. 

'* It's only your sister, Joseph,'' said Amelia, laughing and shaking the 
two fingers which he held out. " I 've come home for good you know ; 
and this is my friend. Miss Sharp, whom you have heard me mention." 

"No, never, upon my word," said the head under the neckcloth, shak- 
ing very much, — " that is, yes, — ^what abominably cold weather, Miss;" — 
and herewith he feU to poking the fire with aU his might, although it was 
in the middle of June. 

** He's very handsome," whispered Eebecca to Amelia, rather loud. 
" Do you think so ?" said the latter, " I '11 tell him." 
" Darling ! not for worlds," said Miss Sharp, starting back as timid 
as a fawn. She had previously made a respectful virgin-like curtsey to 
the gentleman, and her modest eyes gazed so perseveringly on th^ carpet 
that it was a wonder how she should have found an opportunity to see him. 
" Thank you for the beautiftd shawls, brother," said Amelia to the fire- 
poker. " Are they not beautiful, Eebecca ?" 

" O heavenly !" said Miss Sharp, and her eyes went from the carpet 
, straight to the chandelier. 

Joseph still continued a huge clattering at the poker and tongs, puflSng 
and blowing the while, and turning as red as his yellow face would allow 
him. " I can't make you such handsome presents, Joseph," continued his 
sister, " but while I was at school, I have embroidered for you a very 
beautiful pair of braces." 

" Good Gad ! Amelia," cried the brother, in serious alarm, "what do 
you mean ?" and plunging with all his might at the bell-rope, that article 
of furniture came away in his hand, and increased the honest fellow's con- 
fusion. " For heaven's sake see if my buggy 's at the door. I carCt wait. 
I must go. D — that groom of mine. I must go." 

At this minute the father of the family walked in, rattling his seals like 
a true British merchant. " What's the matter, Emmy ?" says he. 
• " Joseph wants me to see if his — ^his huggy is at the door. What is a 
Wgy» papa.? " 


" It is a one-horse palanqain," said the old gentleman, \?ho was a wag 
in his way. 

Joseph at this burst out into a wild fit of laughter ; in which, encounter- 
ing the eye of Miss Sharp, he stopped all of a sudden, as if he had been shot. 

" This young lady is your friend ? Miss Sharp, I am very happy to see 
you. Have you and Emmy b«en quarrelling ahready with Joseph, that he 
wants to be off ?" 

" I promisedBpnamy, of our service, sir," said Joseph, "to dine with him.** 

" O fie ! didn't you tell your mother you would dine here ?" 

" But in this dress it *8 impossible." 

" Look at him, isn't he handsome enough to dine anywhere, Miss 

On which, of course. Miss Sharp looked at her friend, and they both set 
off in a fit of laughter, highly agreeable to the old gentleman. 

" Did you ever see a pair of buckskins like those at Miss Pinkerton's?" 
continued he, following up his advantage. 

" Gracious heavens ! Father," cried Joseph. 

** There now, I have hurt his feelings. Mrs. Sedley, my dear, I have 
liurt your son's feelings. I have alluded to his buckskins. Ask Miss 
Sharp if I haven't ? Come, Joseph, be friends with Miss Sharp, and let 
us aU go to dinner." 

" There's a pillau, Joseph, just as you like it, and Papa has brought 
home the best turbot in Billingsgate." 

" Come, come, sir, walk down stairs with Miss Sharp, and I will follow 
with these two young women," said the father, and he took an arm of wife 
and daughter and walked merrily off. 

If Miss Eebecca Sharp had determined in her heart upon making the 
conquest of this big beau, I don't think, ladies, we have any right to blame 
her ; for though the task of husband-huntiug is generally, and with becom- 
ing modesty, entrusted by young persons to their mammas, recollect that 
Miss Sharp had no kind parent to arrange these delicate matters for her, 
and that if she did not get a husband for herself, there was no one else in 
the wide world who would take the trouble off her hands. What causes 
young people to "come out" but the noble ambition of matrimony? 
What sends them trooping to watering-places ? What keeps them dancing 
till five o'clock in the morning through a whole mortal season ? What 
causes them to labour at piano-forte sonatas, and to learn four songs from 
a fashionable master at a guinea a lesson, and to play the harp if they have 
handsome arms and neat elbows, and to wear Lincoln Green toxopho- 
lite hats and feathers, but that they may bring down some " desirable" 
young man with those killing bows and arroWs of theirs ? What causes 
respectable parents to take up their carpets, set their houses topsy- 
turvy, and spend a fifth of their year's income in ball suppers and iced 
champagne ? Is it sheer love of their species, and an unadulterated wish to 
see young people happy and dancing ? Psha ! they want to marry their 
daughters ; and, as honest Mrs. Sedley has, in the depths of her kind 
heart, already an-anged a score of little schemes for the settlement of her 
Amelia, so also had our beloved but unprotected Eebecca, determined to 


do her very best to secure the husband, who was even more necessary for 
her than for her friend. She had a yivid imagination ; she had, bo^es, 
read the '' Arabian Nights" and " Guthrie's Geogri^hy," and it is a fact, 
that while she was dressing for dinner, and after she had asked Amelia 
whether her brother was very rich, she had built for herself a most magni- 
ficent castle in the air, of which ^e was mistress, with a husband some- 
where in the background (she had not seen him as yet, and his figure 
would not therefore be veiy distinct); she had arrayed herself in an in&dty 
of shawls, turbans, and diamond necklaces, and had mounted upon an 
elephant to the sound of the march in Bluebeard, in order to pay a visit of 
eeremony to the Grand Mogul. Charming AInaschar visions ! it is the 
happy privilege of youth to construct you, and many a fanciful young 
creature besides Eebecca Sharp, has indulged in these dc^ghtful day-dreams 
ere now I 

Joseph Sedley was twelve years older than his sister Amelia. He was in 
the East India Company's Civil Service, and his name appeared, at the 
period of which we write, in the Ben^ division of the East India Eegister^ 
as collector of Boggley Wollah, an honourable and lucrative post, as every- 
body knows : in order to know to what higher posts Joseph rose. in ihe 
service, the reader is referred to the same periodicaL. 

Boggley Wollah is situated in a fine, lonely, marshy, jun^y district, 
famous for snipe-shooting, and where not un&equently you may flmh a 
tiger. Eamgunge, where there is a magistrate, is only forty miles off, 
and there is a cavalry station about thirty miles farther ; so Joseph wrote 
home to his parents, when he took possession of his oollectorship. He 
had lived for about eight years of his hfe, quite alone, at this charm- 
ing place, scarcely seeing a Christian face, except twice a year, when the 
detachment arrived to carry off the revenues which he had collected, to 

Luckily, at this time he caught' a liver complaint, for the cure of whidi 
he returned to Europe, and which was the source of great coniifort 
•and amusement to l^irn in his native country. He did not live with his 
family while in London, but had lodgings of his own, like a gay young 
bachelor. Before he went to India he was too young to part^e of the 
delightful pleasures of a man about town, and plunged into them on his 
return, with considerable .assiduity. He drove his horses in the Park; 
he dined at the fashionable taverns, (for the Oriental Qub was not as 
yet invented) ; he frequented the theatres, as the mode was in those days, 
or made his ajBpeara&ce at the c^era, laboriously attired in lights and a 
coeked hat. 

On returning to India, and ever after, he used to talk of the pleasure of 
this period of his existence with great enthusiasm, and give you to under- 
stand that he and Brummel were the leading bucks of the day. But he 
' wastas lonely here as in his jungle at Boggley Wollah. He scarcely knew 
a single soul in the metropolis : and were it not for his doctor, and the 
society of his bhie-piU, and his liver complaint, he must have died of lone- 
liness. He was lazy, peevish, and a bon-vioant; the appearance of a lady 
frightesied him beyond measure ; hence it was but seldom that he joined 
the paternal circle in BusseU Square, where there was plenty of gaiety, and 


where the jokes of his good-natured old father frightened his amour-propre. 
His bulk caused Joseph much anxious thought and aLarm ; now aiiid then 
he would make a desperate attempt to get rid of his superabtundant fat ; 
but his indolence and love of good living speedily got the better of these 
endeavours at reform, and he found himself again at his three meals a day. 
He never was well dressed ; but he took the .hugest pains to adorn lus 
big person, and passed many hours daily in that occupatiooi. His valet 
made a fortune out of his wardrobe : his toilet-table was covered with as 
many pomatums and essences as ever were employed by an old beauty : 
he had tried, in order to give hin^elf a waist, every girth, stay, and waist- 
band then invented. Like most fat men, he would have Ins dbthes made 
too tight, and took care they should be of the most brilliant oolours 
and* youthful cut. When dressed at length, in the afternoon, he would 
issue forth to take a drive with nobody in the Park ; and thmi would oome 
back in order to dress again and go axid dine with nobody at the Hazsui 
Goffee-House. He was as vain as a girl ; and perhaps his extreme shyness 
was one of the results of his extreme veooity. If Miss Eebecca can get the 
bd;ter of Mm, and at her first entrance into life, she is a young person of 
no ordinary cleverness. 

The first move showed considerable skill. When she called Sedley a 
very handsome man, she knew that AmeHa would tell her mother, who 
would probably teU Joseph, or who, at any rate, would be pleased by the 
cQimpliment psod to her son. AH mothers are. If you had to^d Styoorax 
that her son Caliban was as handsome as Apollo, she would have been 
pleased, witoh as she was. Perhaps, too, Joseph Sedley would overhear 
the oompLbnent — Eebecca sp<^e loud enongh — and he did hear, and (think- 
ing in his heart that he was a very fine man,) the praise thnlled through 
every fibre of his big body, and made it tingle with pleasure. Then, how- 
ever, came a recoil. '' Is the girl making fiin of me?" he thought, and 
straightway he bounced towards the* beU, and was for retreating, as we 

. have seen, when his father's jokes and his mother's entreaties caused him 
to pause and stay where he was. He conducted the young lady down to 
(diimer tin a dubious and agitated frame of mind. " Does she really think 
I jdJEo. handsome ? " thought he, ** or is she only making game of me ? " We 
have talked of Joseph Sedley being as vain as a girl. Heaven help us ! the 
girls have only to turn the tables, and say of one of their own sex, " She is 
as vain as a man," and they will have perfect reason. The bearded orea- 

. tures are quite as eager for praise, quite as finikin over thedr toilettes, quite 
as proud of their personal advantages, quite as cc»scious of their powers of 
faaeination, as any coquette in the world. 

Down stairs, tiien, they went, Joseph very red and blushing, Eebecca 
yery mcdest, and holding her green eyes downwards. She was dressed 
in white, with bare shoulders as wbdte as snow — the picture of youth, 
xuipoteoted innocence, and humble virgin simplicity. " I must be very 

:q«iet," thought Eebecca, " and very much interested about India." 

Now we have heard how Mrs. Sedley had prqwured a fine curry for her 
son, just as he liked it, and in the course of dinner a portion of this dish 
was offered to Eebecca. "What is it?" said she, turoing an appealing 
^jj^Dok to Mr. Joseph. 



" Capital ;" said he. His mouth was fall of it : his face quite red with 
the dehghtful exercise of gobbling. "Mother, it's as good as my own 
carries in India." 

" Oh, I must try some, if it is an Indian dish," said Miss Eebecca. " I 
am sure everything must be good that comes from there." 

" Give Miss Sharp some curry, my dear," said Mr. Sedley, laughing. 

Eebecca had never tasted the dish before. 

"Do you find it as good as everything else from India?" said Mr. 

" Oh, excellent ! " said Eebecca, who was suffering tortures with the 
cayenne pepper. 

" Try a chili with it, Miss Sharp," said Joseph, really interested. 

" A chili," said Eebecca, gasping. " Oh yes !" She thought a chili was 
something cool, as its name imported, and was served with some. " How 
fresh and green they look," she said, and put one into her mouth. It was 
hotter than the curry ; flesh and blood could bear it no longer. She laid 
down her fork. " Water, for Heaven's sake, water ! " she cried. Mr. 
Sedley burst out laughing (he was a coarse man, from the Stock Exchange, 
where they love aU sorts of practical jokes). "They are real Indian, I 
assure you," said he. " Sambo, give Afiss Sharp some water." 

The paternal laugh was echoed by Joseph, who thought the joke capital. 
The ladies only smiled a little. They thought poor Eebecca suffered too 
much. She would have liked to choke old Sedley, but she swallowed her 
mortification as well as she had the abominable curry before it, and as 
soon as she could speak, said, with a comical, good-humoured air — 

" I ought to have remembered the pepper which the Princess of Persia 
puts in the cream-tarts in the Arabian Nights. Do you put cayenne 
into your cream-tarts in India, sir ? " 

Old Sedley began to laugh, and thought Eebecca was a good-humoured 
gu"l. Joseph simply said — " Cream-tarts, Miss ? Our cream is very bad 
in Bengal. We generally use goats' milk ; and, 'gad, do you know, I've 
got to prefer it?" 

" You won't like everything from India now, Miss Sharp," said the old 
gentleman; but when the ladies had retired after dioner, the wily old 
fellow said to his son, " Have a care, Joe ; that girl is setting her cap at 

" Pooh ! nonsense ! " said Joe, highly flattered. " I recollect, sir, there 
was a girl at Dumdum, a daughter of Cutler of the Artillery, and after- 
wards married to Lance, the surgeon, who made a dead set at me in the 
year '4 — at me and MuUigatawney, whom I mentioned to you before 
dinner — a devilish good fellow MuUigatawney — he's a magistrate at 
Budgebudge, and sure to be in council in five years. Well, sir, the Artil- 
lery gave a ball, and Quintin, of the King's 14th, said to me, ' Sedley,* 
said he, ' I bet you thirteen to ten that Sophy Cutler hooks either you or 
MuUigatawney before the rains.' *Done,' says I; and egad, sir — this 
claret's very good. Adamson's or Carbonell's ? " * * ♦ 

A slight snore was the only reply : the honest stock-broker was asleep, 
and so the rest of Joseph's story was lost for that day. But he is always 
exceedingly communicative in a man's party, and has told this delightM 



tale many scores of times to his apothecary, Dr. GroUop, when he came to 
inquire about the liver and the blue-piU. 

Being an invalid, Joseph Sedley contented himself with a bottle of claret 
besides his Madeira at dinner, and he managed a couple of plates fviJl of 
strawberries and cream, and twenty-four little rout cakes, that were lying 
neglected in a plate near him, and certainly (for novelists have the privilege 
of knowing everything), he thought a great deal about the girl up stairs. 
" A nice, gay, merry young creature," thought he to himself. " How she 
looked at me when I picked up her handkerchief at dinner ! She dropped 
it twice. Who 's that singing in the drawing-room ? *Gad ! shall I go 
up and see ? " 

But his modesty came rushing upon him with uncontrolable force. 
His father was asleep : his hat was in the hall : there was a hackney- 
coach stand hard by in Southampton Kow. " I '11 go -and see the Forty 
Thieves" said he, " and Miss Decamp's dance ;" and he slipped away 
gently on the pointed toes of his boots, and disappeared, without waking 
his worthy parent. 

" There goes Joseph," said Amelia, who was looking from the open 
windows of the drawing-room, while Eebecca was singing at the piano. 

" Miss Sharp has frightened him away," said Mrs. Sedley. " Poor Joe, 
why will he be so shy ? " 



cw» Joe's panie lasted for two or three 
days; during which he did not visit 
the house, n»r during that period did 
Miss Bebecca ever mention his name. 
She was all respectful gratitude to 
Mrs. Sedley ; defighted beyond mea- 
8u<re at the Bazaars ; and in a whirl of 
wonder at the theatre, whither the 
good-natured lady took her. One 
day, Amelia had a head-ache, and 
could not go upon some party of 
pleasm'e to which the two young 
people were invited; nothing could 
induce her friend to go without her. 
"What! you who have shown the 
poor orphan what happiness and love are for the first time in her life — 
quit you ? never ! " and the green eyes looked up to Heaven and filled 
with tears ; and Mrs. Sedley could not but own that her daughter's friend 
had a charming kind heart of her own. 

As for Mr. Sedley's jokes, Eebecca laughed at them with a cordiality 
and perseverance which not a little pleased and softened that good-natured 
gentleman. Nor was it with the chiefs of the family alone that Miss 
Sharp found favour. She interested Mrs. Blenkinsop by evincing the 
deepest sympathy in the raspberry-jam preserving, wluch operation was 
then going on in the Housekeeper's room ; she persisted in calling Sambo 
" Sir," and ** Mr. Sambo," to the delight of that attendant ; and she 
apologised to the lady's maid for giving her trouble in venturing to ring 
the bell, with such sweetness and humility, that the Servants' Hall was 
almost as charmed with her as the Drawing Eoom. 

Once, in looking over some drawings which Amelia had sent from 
school, Eebecca suddenly came upon one which caused her to burst into 
tears and leave the room. It was on the day when Joe Sedley made his 
second appearance. 

Amelia hastened after her fr-iend to know the cause of this display of 
feeling, and the good-natm-ed girl came back without her companion, 
rather affected too. "You know, her father was our drawing-master, 
Mamma, at Chiswick, and Used to do all the best parts of our drawings." 
" My love ! I 'm sure I always heard Miss Pinkerton say that he did 
not touch them — he only mounted them." 

" It was called mounting, Mamma. Eebecca remembers the drawing. 


and ber father working at it, and the thought of it came upoii hoc rather 
suddenly*— and so, you know, she " 

'' The poor child is all heart," said Mrs: Sedley. 

" I wish she could stay with us another week," said Amelia. 

" ^e 's devilish like Miss Cutler that I used to meet at Dumdum, only 
fairer. She 's married now to Lanee, the Artillery surgeon. Do you know^ 
Ma'am, that once Quintin, of the 14th, bet me " 

" O Joeeph, we know that story ; " said Amelia, laughing. '' Nev^ 
mind about tdMng that ; but persuade Mamma to write to Sir Something 

" Had he a son in the King's Light Dragoons in India P " 

'' Well, win you write to Inm for leave of absoice for poor dear Sebeeoa : 
— ^here she comes, her eyes red with weq)ing.'* 

*' I 'm better, now," said the girl, with the sweetest smile possible, 
taking good-natured Mrs. Sedley's extended hand and kissing it respect* 
fiilly. " How kind you all are to me ! All," she added, with a laug^^ 
" except you, Mr. Joseph." 

*' Me ! " said Joseph, meditating an instant departure. " Qradoas 
Heavens ! Good Grad ! Miss Sharp I " 

" Yes ; how could you be so cruel as to make me eat that horrid pep- 
per-dish at dinner, the first day I ever saw you ? You are not so good to 
me as dear Amelia." 

** He doesn't know you so well," cried Amelia. 

" I defy anybody not to be good to you, my dear," said her mother. 

"The curry was capital; indeed it was," said Joe, quite gravely. 
" Perhaps there was not enough citron juice in it ; — ^no, there was not" 

" And the chiHs ? " 

" By Jove, how they made you cry out ! " said Joe, caught by the ridi- 
cule of the circumstance^4md exploding in a fit of laughter which ended 
quite suddenly, as usualr. 

'' I shall take care how I let t/ou choose for me anoth» time," said 
Eebecca, as they w^ down again to dinner. '* I didn't think. men were 
fond of putting poor harmless girls to pain." 

" By Grad, Miss Eebecca, I wouldn't hurt you for the world.''' 

" No," said she, " I know you wouldn't ; " and then she gave him ever 
so gentle a pressure with her little hand, and drew it back quite brightened, 
and looked first for one instant in his face, and then down at the carpet- 
rods ; and I am not prepared to say that Joe's heart did not thump at 
this little involuntary, timid, gentle motion of regard on the part of the 
simple giri. 

It was an advance, and as such, perhaps, some ladies of indisputable 
correctness and gentility will condemn the action as immodest ; but, you 
see, poor dear Eebecca had all this work to do for hersdf. If a person 
is too poor to keep a servant, though ever so elegant, he must sweep lus own 
rooms : if a dear girl has no dear Mamma to settle matters with the young 
man, she must do it for herself. And oh, what a mercy it is that these 
women do not exercise their powers oftener ! We can't resist them, if 
they do. Let them show ever so little inclination, and men go down on 
their knees at once : old or ugly, it is all the sama. And this I set down 


as a positive tjnith. A woman with fair opportunities, and without an 
absolute hump, may marry whom she likes. Only let us be thankful 
that the darlings are like the beasts of the field, and don't know their own 
power. They would overcome us entirely if they did. 

" Egad ! " thought Joseph, entering the dining-room, " I exactly begin 
to feel as I did at Dumdum with Miss Cutler." Many sweet little appeals, 
half tender, half jocular, did Miss Sharp make to him about the dishes at 
dinner ; for by this time she was on a footing of considerable familiarity 
with the family, and as for the girls, they loved each other like sisters. 
Young unmarried girls always do, if they are in a house together for ten 

As if bent upon advancing Eebecca's plans in every way — what must 
Amelia do, but remind her brother of a promise made last Easter holidays 
— " When I was a girl at school,*' said she, laughing — a promise that he, 
Joseph, would take her to Vauxhall. " Now," she said, " that Kebecca 
is with us, will be the very time," 

" O, delightful ! " said Eebecca, going to clap her hands ; but she re- 
collected herself, and paused, like a modest creature, as she was. 

" To-night is not the night," said Joe. 
■ ** Well, to-morrow." 

" To-morrow your Papa and I dine out," said Mrs. Sedley. 

" You don't suppose that I'm going, Mrs. Sed. ? " said her husband, 
" and that a woman of your years and size is to catch cold, in such an 
abominable damp place ? " 
• " The children must have some one with them," cried Mrs. Sedley. 

*' Let Joe go," said his father, laughing. " He 's biff enough." At 
which speech even Mr. Sambo at the sideboard burst out laughing, and 
poor fat Joe felt inclined to become a parricide almost. 

" Undo his stays 1 " continued the pitiless old gentleman. " Pling some 
water in his face, Miss Sharp, or carry him up stairs : the dear creature' s 
fainting. Poor victim ! carry him up ; he 's as light as a feather ! " 

" If he stand this. Sir, I 'm d ! " roared Joseph. 

" Order Mr. Jos's elephant. Sambo ! " cried the father. ".Send to 
Exeter 'Change, Sambo ; " but seeing Jos ready almost to cry with vexa- 
tion, the old joker stopped his laughter, and said, holding out his hand to 
his son, " It's all fair on the Stock-Exchange, Jos, — and. Sambo, never 
mind the elephant, but give me and Mr. Jos a glass of Champagne. Boney 
himself hasn't got such in his cellar, my boy ! " 

A goblet of Champagne restored Joseph's equanimity, and before the 
bottle was emptied, of which as an invalid he took two-thirds, he had 
^reed to take the young ladies to VauxhaU. 

" The girls must have a gentleman apiece," said the old gentleman. 
" Jos will be sure to leave Emmy in the crowd, he will be so taken up with 
Miss Sharp here. Send to 26, and ask George Osborne if he'll come." 

At this, I don't know in the least for what reason, Mrs. Sedley looked 
at her husband and laughed. Mr. Sedley's eyes twinkled in a manner 
indescribably roguish ; and he looked at Amelia, and Amelia hanging- 
down her head, blushed as only young ladies of seventeen know how to 
blush, and as Miss Bebecca Shai^p never blushed in her life — at least not 


since she was eight years old, and when she was caught stealing jam out 
of a cupboard by her godmother. " Amelia had better write a note," said 
her father ; " and let Greorge Osborne see what a beautiful hand- writing 
we have brought back from Miss Pinkerton*s. Do you remember when 
you wrote to him to come on Twelfth-night, Emmy, and spelt twelfth 

" That was years ago," said Amelia. 

" It seems like yesterday, don't it, John ? " said Mrs. Sedley to her hus- 
band ; and that night in a conversation which took place in a front room 
in the second-floor, in a sort of tent, himg round with chintz of a rich and 
fantastic India pattern, and double ynih. calico of a tender rose-colour ; in 
the interior of which species of marquee, was a feather-bed, on which were 
two pillows, on which were two jround red faces, one in a laced nightcap, and 
one in a simple cotton one, ending in a tassel : — ^in a curtain lecture, I 
say, Mrs. Sedley took her husband to task for his cruel conduct to poor 

" It was quite wicked of you, Mr. Sedley," said she, " to torment the 
poor boy so." 

" My dear," said the cotton-tassel in defence of his conduct, " Jos is 
a great deal vainer than you ever were in your life, and that 's saying a 
good deal. Though, some thirty years ago, in the year seventeen hundred 
and eighty — ^what was it ? — ^perhaps you had a right to be vain. — ^I don't 
say no. But I Ve no patience with Jos and his dandified modesty. It is 
out-Josephing Joseph, my dear, and all the while the boy is only thinking 
of himself, and what a fine fellow he is. I doubt. Ma'am, we shall have 
some trouble with him yet. Here is Emmy's little friend making love to 
him as hard as she can ; that 's quite clear ; and if she d()es not catch 
him some other will. That man is destined to be a prey to woman, as I 
am to go on 'Change every day. It 's a mercy he did not bring us over 
a black daughter-in-law, my dear. But, mark my words, the first woman 
who fishes for him, hooks him." 

" She shall go off to-morrow, the little artful creature," said Mrs. Sedley, 
with great energy. 

" Why not she as well as another, Mrs. Sedley ? The girl's a white 
face at any rate. / don't care who marries him. Let Joe please 

And presently the voices of the two speakers were hushed, or were 
replaced by the gentle but unromantic music of the nose ; and save when 
the church beUs tolled the hour and the watchman called it, all was silent 
at the house of John Sedley, Esquire, of EusseE Square, and the Stock 

When morning came, the good-natured Mrs. Sedley no longer thought 
of executing her threats with regard to Miss Sharp ; for though nothing 
is more keen, nor more common, nor more justifiable, than maternal 
jealousy, yet she could not bring herself to suppose that the little, humble, 
gratefid, gentle governess, would dare to look up to such a magnificent 
personage as the Collector of Boggley Wollah. The petition, too, for an 
extension of the young lady's leave of absence had already been despatched, 
and it would be difficult to find a pretext for abruptly dismissing her. 


And as if all things conspired in faroor of the gentle Bebeoea, the t^ 
elements (although she was not inclined at first to acknowledge their 
action in her behalf) interposed to aid her. For on the eyeaing appointed 
for the Yauxhall; party, George Osborne haying come to dinner, and the 
elders of the house having departed, according to invitation, to dine witli 
Alderman Balls, at Highbury Barn, there came on such a thunder-stOTm 
as only happens on Yauxhall nights, and as obliged the young people, 
perforce, to remain at home. Mr. Osborne did not seem in the least dis- 
appointed at this occurrence. He and Jos^h Sedley drank a fitting 
quantity of port-wine, tSte-a-tite, in the dining-room, during the drinking 
of which Sedley told a number of his best Indian stories ; for he was ex*- 
tremely talkative in man's society, and afterwards Miss Amelia Sedley did 
the honours of the drawing-room ; and these four young persons passed 
such a comfortable evening together, that they declared they were rather 
glad of the thunder-storm than otherwise, which had caused them to pot 
off their visit to Yauxhall. 

Osbonm was Sedley's godson, and had been one of the family any time 
these three-and-twenty years. At six weeks old, he had received from 
John Sedley a present of a silver cup ; at six months old, a coral with 
gold whistle and bells ; from his youth, upwards, he was "tipped" regu- 
larly by the old gentleman at Christmas ; and on going back to school, 
remembered perfectly well being thrashed by Joseph Sedley, when the 
latter was a big, swaggering, hobbadyhoy, and George an impudent urchin 
of ten years old. In a word, George was as familiar with the family as 
such daily acts of kindness and intercourse could make him. 

** Do you remember, Sedley, what a fury you were in, when I cut off 
the tassels of your Hessian boots, and how Miss — ^hem ! — ^how Amelia 
rescued me from a beating, by falliig down on her knees and crying out 
to her brother Jos, not to beat little George ? " 

Jos remembered this remarkable circumstance perfectly well, but vowed 
that he had totally forgotten it. 

" Well, do you remember coming down in a gig to Dr. Swishtail's, to 
see me, before you went to India, and giving me half a guinea and a pat 
on the head ? I always had an idea that you were at least seven feet 
high, and was quite astonished at your return from India to find you no 
taller than myself." 

"How good of Mr. Sedley to go to your school and give you the 
money 1" exclaimed Eebecca, in accents of extreme delight. 

" Yes, and after I had cut the tassels of his boots too. Boys never 
forget those tips at school, nor the givers." 

" I delight in Hessian boots," said Eebecca. Jos Sedley, who admired 
his own legs prod^ously, and always wore this ornamental chausmre, was 
extremely pleased at this remark, though he drew his legs under his chair 
as it was made, 

" Miss Sharp !" said George Osborne, "you who are so clever an artist, 
you must make a grand historical picture of the scene of the boots. Sedley 
shall be represented in buckskins, and holding one of the injured boots in 
one hand ; by the other he shall have hold of my shirt-frill. Amelia shall 
be kneeling near him, with her little hands up ; and the picture shall have 


a grand allegorical title, aa the frontispieces liave in the Medulla and the 

" I shan't have time to do it here," said Bebecca. " I '11 do it when — 
, when I am gone." And she dropped her voice, and looked so sad and 
piteous, that everybody felt how cruel her lot was, and how sony they 
would be to part with her. 

" O that you could stay longer, dear Kebecca," said Amelia. 

" Why ?" answered the other, still more sadly. " That I may be only 
the more unliap — unwiUing to lose you?" And she turned away her 
head. Amelia began to give way to that natural infirmity of tears which, 
we have said, was one of the defects of this silly little thing. George 
Osborne looked at the two joung women with a touched curiosity ; and 
Joseph Sedley heaved something very like a sigh out of his big chest, as he 
cast his eyes down towards his favourite Hessian boots. 

" Let us have some music. Miss Sedley — ^Amelia," said Greorge, who 
felt at that moment an extraordinary, almost irresistible impulse to seize 
the above-mentioned young woman in his arms, and to kiss her in the face 
of the company ; and she looked at him for a moment, and if I should say 
that they fell in love with each other at that single instant of time, I should 
perhaps be telling an untruth, for the fact is, that these two young people 
had been bred up by their parents for this very purpose, and their banns 
had, as it were, been read in their respective families any time these ten 
years. They went off to the piano, which was situated, as pianos usually 
are, in the back drawing-room ; and as it was rather dark. Miss Amelia, in 
the most unaffected way in the world, put her hand into Mr. Osborne's, 
who, of course, could see the way among the chairs and ottomans a great 
deal better than she could. But this arrangement leffc Mr. Joseph Sedley 
tete-a-Ute with Bebecca, at the drawing-room table, where the latter wa» 
occupied in netting a green silk purse. 

" There is no need to ask family secrets," said Miss Sharp. " Those 
two have told theirs." 

" As soon as he gets his- company," said Joseph, " I believe the affair is 
settled. George Osborne is as good a fellow as ever breathed." 

"And your sister the dearest creature in the world," said Bebecca. 
" Happy the raun who wins her i" With this. Miss Sharp gave a great sigh. 

When two unmarried persons get together, and talk upon such delicate 
subjects as the present, a great deal of confidence and intimacy is presently 
established between them. There is no need of giving a special report of 
the conversation which now took place between Mr. Sedley and the young 
lady ; for the conversation, as may be judged from the foregoing specimen, 
was not especially witty or eloquent ; it seldom is in private societies, or 
any^di^'e except in very high-flown and ingenious novels. As there was 
music in the next room, the talk was carried on, of course, in a low and 
becoming tone, though, for the matter of that, the couple in the next apart- 
ment would not have been disturbed had the talking been ever so loud, so 
occupied were they with their own pursuits. 

Almost for the first time in his Hfe, Mr. Sedley found himsdf talking, 
without the least timidity or hesitation, to a person of the other sex. Miss 
Bebecca asked him a great number of questions about India, which gave 


him an opportunity of narrating many interesting anecdotes about that 
country and himself. He described the balls at Government House, and 
the manner in which they kept themselves cool in the hot weather, with 
punkahs, tatties, and other contrivances ; and he was very witty regarding 
the number of Scotchmen whom Lord Minto, the Governor-General, 
patronised ; and then he described a tiger hunt ; and the manner in which 
the mahout of his elephant had been pulled off his howdah by one of the 
infuriated animals,. How delighted Miss Bebecca was at the Government 
balls, and how she laughed at the stories of the Scotch aides-de-camp, and 
called Mr. Sedley a sad wicked satirical creature ; and how frightened she 
was at the story of the elephant ! " For your mother's sake, dear Mr. 
Sedley," she said, " for the sake of all your friends, promise never to go on 
one of those horrid expeditions." 

" Pooh, pooh, Miss Sharp," said he, pulling up his shirt-collars ; " the 
danger makes the sport only the pleasanter." He had never been but once 
at a tiger-hunt, when the acxjident in question occurred, and when he was 
half killed — ^not by the tiger, but by the fright. And as he talked on, he 
grew quite bold, and actually had the audacity to ask Miss Eebecca for 
whom she was knitting the green silk purse ? He was quite surprised and 
delighted at his own graceful familiar manner. 

" For any one who wants a purse," replied Miss Eebecca, looking at 
him in the most gentle winning way., Sedley was going to make one of 
the most eloquent speeches possible, and had begun, " O Miss Sharp, 

how " when some song which was performed in the other room came to 

an end, and caused him to hear his own voice so distinctly that he stopped, 
blushed, and blew his nose in great agitation. 

" Did you ever hear anything like your brother's eloquence ?" whispered 
Mr. Osborne to Amelia. " Why, your friend has worked miracles." 

" The more the better," said Miss Amelia ; who, like ahnost all women 
who are worth a pin, was a match-maker in her heart, and would have been 
delighted that Joseph should carry back a wife to India.. She had, too, in 
the course of this' few days' constant intercourse, warmed into a most 
tender friendship for Eebecca, and discovered a million of virtues and 
amiable qualities in her which she had not perceived when they were at 
Chiswick together. For the affection of young ladies is of as rapid growth 
as Jack's bean-stalk, and reaches up to the sky in a night. It is no blame 
to them that after marriage this SehmucM nach der lAehe subsides. It is 
what sentimentalists, who deal in very big words, call a yearning after the 
Ideal, and simply means that women are commonly not satisfied until they 
have husbands and children on whom they may centre affections, which 
are spent elsewhere, as it were, in small change. 

Having expended her little store of songs, or having stayed long enough 
in the back drawing-room, it now appeared proper to Miss Amelia to ask 
her friend to sing. " You would not have listened to me," she said to 
Mr. Osborne, (tk^ugh she knew she was telling a fib,) " had you heard 
Eebecca first." 

"I give Miss Sharp warning, though," said Osborne, "that, right or 
wrong, I consider Miss Amelia Sedley the first singer in the world." 

" You shall hear," said Amelia j and Joseph Sedley was actually polite 



enough to carry the candles to the piano. Osborne hinted that he should 
like quite as well to sit in the dark ; but Miss Sedley, laughing, declined 
to bear him company any farther, and the two accordingly followed Mr. 
Joseph. Eebecca sang far better than her friend, (though of course 
Osborne, was free to keep his opinion,) and exerted herself to the utmost, 
and, indeed, to the wonder of Amelia, who had never known her perform 
so well. She sang a French song, which Joseph did not understand in the 
least, and which George confessed he did not understand, and then a 
number of those simple ballads which were the fashion forty years ago, 
and in which British tars, our King, poor Susan, blue-eyed Mary, and the 
like, were the principal themes. They are not, it is said, very brilliant, in 
a musical point of view, but contain numberless good-natured, simple 
appeals to the affections, which people understood better than the milk- 
and-water lagrime, sospiri, and felicM of the eternal Donizettian music 
with which we are favoured now-a-days. 

Conversation of a sentimental sort, befitting the subject, was carried on 
between the songs, to which Sambo, after he had brought the tea, the 


delighted cook, and even Mrs. Blenkinsop, the housekeeper, condescended 
to l^ten on the landing-place. 


Among these ditties was one, the last of the concert, .and to the follow- 
ing effect ; — 

Ah ! bleak and barren was ihe moor. 

Ah ! loud and piercing was the stormy 
The cottage hearth was sheltered sure. 

The cottage hearth was bright and warm — 
An orphan boy the lattice pass'd, 

And, as he mark'd its cheerful glow. 
Felt doubly keen the midnight blast. 

And doubly cold the £&Uen snow. 

They mark'd him as he onward prest, 

With fainting heart and weary limb ; 
Kind voices bade him tiu:n and rest. 

And gentle faces welcomed him. 
The dawn is up — the guest is gone, 

The cottage hearth is blazing still ; 
Heaven pity all poor wanderers lone ! 

Hark to the wind upon the hill 1 

It was the sentiment of the before-mentioned words, "When I'm gone," 
over again. As she came to the last words, Miss Sharp's " deep-toned 
voice faltered." Everybody felt the allusion to her departure, and to her 
hapless orphan state. Joseph Sedley, who was fond of music, and soft- 
hearted, was in a state of ravishment during the performance of the song, 
and profoundly touched at its conclusion. If he had had the courage ; if 
George and Miss Sedley had remained according to the former's proposal, 
in the farther room, Joseph Sedley's bachelorhood would have been at an 
end, and this work would never have been written. But at the close of 
the ditty, Eebecca quitted the piano, and giving her hand to Amelia, 
walked away into the front drswing-rocttn twilight ; and, at this moment, 
Mr. Sambo made his appearance with a teay, containing sandwiches, jellies, 
and some glittering glasses and decanters, on which Joseph Sedley's atten- 
tion was immediately fixed. When the parents of the house of Sedley 
retmned from their dinner-party, they foiind iiie young people so busy in 
talking, that they had not heaicd the arrival of the carriage, and Mr. 
Joseph was in the act of saying, ** My dear Miss Sharp, one little tea- 
spoonful of jeUy to recruit you after your immeBse — ^your — ^your deligMful 

"Bravo, Jos ! " said Mr. Sedley; on hearing the bantering of which 
well-known voice, Jos instantly relapsed into an alarmed silence, and 
quickly took his departure. He did not lie awake aU night thinking 
whether or not he was in love with Miss Sharp ; the passion of love never 
interfered with the appetite or the slumber of Mr. Joseph Sedley ; but he 
thought to himself how delightful it would be to hear such songs as those 
after Cutcherry — ^what a distingtiee girl she was — ^how she could speak 
French better than the Governor-General's lady herself—- «nd- what a sen- 
sation she would make at the Calcutta balls. " It's -evident the poor 
devil's in love with me," thought he. " She is just as rich as most of the 
girls who come out to India. I might go farther, and fare worse, egad ! " 
And in these meditations he fell asleep. 

How Miss Sharp lay awake, thinking, wiU he come or not to-morrow ? 


need not be told here. To-morrow came, and, as Bure as fi^, Mr. Joseph 
Sedley made his appearance before luncheon. He had never been known 
before to confer such an honour on Bussell Square. George Osborne was 
somehow there already (sadly " putting out " Ametia, who was writing to 
her twelve dearest friends at Ghiswick Mall), and Bebecca was employed 
upon her yesterday's work. As Joe's buggy drove up, and while, after 
his usual thundering knock and pompous bustle at the door, the Collector 
of Boggley Wollah laboured up stairs to the drawing-room, knowing 
glances were telegraphed between Osborne and Miss Sedley, and the pair, 
smiling archly, looked at Eebecca, who actually blushed as she bent her 
fair ringlets over her netting. How her heart beat as Joseph appeared, — 
Joseph, puffing- from the staircase in shining creaking boots,— Joseph, in 
a new waistcoat, red with heat and nervousness, and blushing behind his 
wadded neckcloth. It was a nervous moment for all ; and as for Amelia, 
I think she was more frightened than even the people most oonoemed. 

Sambo, who flung open the door and announced Mr. Joseph, followed 
grinning, in the Collector's rear, and bearing two handsome nosegays of 
Sowers, which the monster had actually had the gallantry to purchase in 
Covent Garden Market that morning — ^they were not as big as the hay- 
stacks which ladies carry about with them now-a-days, in ccmes of filagree 
paper; but the young women were delighted with the gift, as Joseph 
presented one to each, with an exceedingly solemn and clumsy bow. 

" Bravo, Jos ! " cried Osborne. 

"Thank you, dear Joseph," said Amelia, quite ready to kiss her 
brother, if he were so minded. (And I think for a kiss from such a dear 
creature as Amelia, I would purchase aU Mr. Lee's conservatories out of 

" O heavenly, heavenly flowers ! " exclaimed Miss Sharp, and smelt 
them delicately, and held them to her bosom, and cast up her eyes to the 
ceiling, in an ecstasy of admiration. Perhaps she just looked first into the 
bouquet, to see whether th»re was a billet-doux hidden among the flowers ; 
but there was no letter. 

" Do they talk the language of flowers at Boggley Wollah, Sedley ? " 
asked Osborne, laughing. 

" Language of fiddlestick ! " replied the sentimental youth. "Bought 
'em at Nathan's ; very glad you like 'em ; and eh, Amelia, my dear, I 
bought a pine-apple at the same time, which I gave to Sambo. Let's have 
it for tiffin ; very cool and nice this hot weather." Bebecca said she had 
never tasted a pine, and longed beyond everything to taste one. 

So the conversation went on. I don't know on what pretext Osborne 
left the room, or why, presently, Amelia went away, perhaps to superin- 
tend the slicing of the pine-apple ; but Jos was left alone with Eebecca, 
who had resumed her work, and the green silk and the shining needles 
were quivering rapidly under her white slender fingers. 

" What a beautiful, byoo-ootiful song that was you sang last night, dear 
Miss Sharp," said the Collector. "It made me cry sJmost; 'pon my 
honour it did." 

" Because you have a kind heart, Mr. Joseph : all the Sedleys have, I 



"It kept me awake last night, and I was trying to hum it this morning, 
in bed ; I was, upon my honour. Gollop, my doctor, came in at eleven 
(for I'm a sad invalid, you know, and see GroUop every day), and, 'gad ! 
there I was, singing away like — a robin." 

" you droll creature ! Do let me hear you sing it." 
" Me ? No, you, Miss Sharp ; my dear Miss Sharp, do sing it.^' 
" Not now, Mr. Sedley," said Eebecca, with a sigh. " My spirits are 
not equal to it : besides, I must finish the purse. Will you help me, Mr. 
Sedley ?" And before he had time to ask how, Mr. Joseph Sedley, of the 
East India Company's service, was actually seated tSte-d-tete with a young 
lady, looking at her with a most killing expression ; his arms stretched 
out before her in an imploring attitude, and his hands bound in a web of 

green silk, which she was unwinding. 

m « « m . * « 

In this romantic position Osborne and Amelia found the interesting 
pair, when they entered to announce that tiffin was ready. The skein of 
silk was just wound round the card ; but Mr. Jos had never spoken. 

"I am sure he will to-night, dear," Amelia said, as she pressed Itebecca's 
hand ; and Sedley, too, had communed with his soul, and said to himself, 
" 'Gad, I'll pop the question at Vauxhall." 



cVZ^. O '^■Jcy?/^ cy^Cr//^^- 

ry/ /r> 




UFF'S fight with Dobbin, and the 
unexpected issue of that contest, will 
long be remembered by every man 
who was educated at Dr. Swishtail's 
famous school. The latter youth (who 
used to be called Heigh-ho Dobbin, 
Gee-ho Dobbin, and by many other 
names indicative of puerile contempt) 
was the quietest, the clumsiest, and, 
as it seemed, the dullest of all Dr. 
Swishtail's young gentlemen. His 
parent was a grocer in the city : and 
it was bruited abroad that he was ad* 
mitted into Dr. Swishtail's academy 
upon what are called * mutual prin- 
ciples' — that is to say, the expenses of his board and schooling were 
defrayed by his father, in goods not money ; and he stood there-~almost 
at the bottom of the school— in his scraggy corduroys and jacket, through 
the seams of which his great big bones were bursting — ^as the representative 
of so many pounds of tea, candles, sugar, mottled-soap, plums, (of which a 
very mild proportion was supplied for the puddings of the establishment), and 
othor commodities. A dreadful day it was for young Dobbin when one of 
the youngsters of the school, having run into the the town upon a poaching 
excursion for hardbake and polonies, espied the cart of Dobbin & Eadge, 
Grocers and OHmen, Thames Street, London, at the Doctor's door, dis- 
charging a cargo of the wares in which the firm dealt. 

Young Dobbin had no peace after that. The jokes were frightful, and 
merciless against him. " Hullo, Dobbin,'* one wag would say, " here's 
good news in the paper. Sugars is ris', my boy." Another would set 
a sum — " If a pound of mutton-candles cost sevenpence-halfpenny, how 
much must Dobbin cost?" and a roar would follow from all the circle of 
young knaves, usher and all, who rightly considered that the selling of goods 
by retail is a shameful and infamous practice, meriting the contempt and 
scorn of all real gentlemen. 

"Your father's only a merchant, Osborne," Dobbin said in private to 
the little boy who had brought down the storm upon him. At which 
the latter replied haughtily, " My father 's a gentleman, and keeps his 
carriage ;" and Mr. William Dobbin retreated to a remote outhouse in 
the play-ground, where he passed a half-holiday in the bitterest sadness 
and wo. Who amongst us is there that does not recollect similar hom^s of 



bitter, bitter childish grief ? Who feels injustice ; who shrinks before a 
slight ; who has a sense of wrong so acute, and so glowing a gratitude 
for kindness, as a generous boy ? and how many of those gentle souls do 
you degrade, estrange, torture, for the sake of a little loose arithmetic, and 
miserable dog-latin? 

Now, William Dobbin, from an incapacity to acquire the rudiments of 
the above language, as they are propounded in that wonderful book the 
Eton Latin Grammar, was compelled to remain among the very last of 
Doctor Swishtail's scholars, and was 'taken down' continually by little 
fellows with pink faces and pinafores when he marched up with the lower 
form, a giant amongst them, with his downcast, stupefied look, his dogs-eared 
primer, and his tight corduroys. High and low, all made fun of him. 
They sewed up those corduroys, tight as they were. They cut his bed- 
strings. They upset buckets and benches, so that fte might break his 
shins over them, which he never failed to do. They sent him parcels, 
which, when opened, were found to eontain the paternal soap and candles. 
There was no little fellow but had his jeer and joke at Dobbin ; and he 
bore everything quite patiently, and was entirely dumb and miserahla. 

Cuff, on the contrary, wajy the great chief and dandy of the Swishtail 
Seminary. He smuggled wine in. He fought the town-boys. Ponies 
used to come for him to ride home on Saturdays. He had his top-boots 
in his room, in which he used to hunt in the holidays. He had a gold 
repeater : and took snuff like the Doctor. He had been to the Opera, 
and knew the merits' of the principal actors, preferring Mr. Kean to Mr. 
Kemble. He could knock you off forty Latin verses in an hout. He couM 
make French poetry. What elsee didn't he know, or couldn't he do ? They 
said even the DoctcM* himself was afraid of him. 

Cuff, the imquestbned king of the school, ruled over his subjedis, and 
bullied them, with splendid superiority. This one blacked his shoes : that 
toasted his bread, others would fag out, and give him bails at cricket, 
during whole summer afternoons. ' Figs ' was the fellow whom he despised 
most, and with whom, though always abusing him, and sneering at him, 
he scarcely ever condescended to hold person^ communication. 

One day in private, the two young gentlemen had had a difference. Figs, 
alone in the school-room, was blundmng over a home letter j when Cuff, 
entering, bade him go upon some message, of which tarta were probably 
the subject. 

" I can't," says Dobbin ; " I want to finish my letter." 
" You cmCt ? " says Mr. Cuff, laying hold of that document, (in which 
many words were scratched out, many were mis-spelt, on which had been 
spent I don't know how much thought, and labour, and tear? ;. for the poor 
fellow was writing to his mother, who was fond of him, although she was 
a grocer's wife, and lived in a back parlor in Thames-street), " You canH? " 
says Mr. Cuff -. " I should like to know why, pray ? Can't you write to 
old Mother Figs to-morrow ?" 

" Don't call names," Dobbin, said, getting off the bench, very nervous. 
" Well, sir, will you go ? " crowed the cock of the school 
" Put down the letter," Dobbin replied ; " no gentleman readth lettertL" 
" Well, now will you go p" says the other. 



" No, I won't. Don't strike, or 111 ihmash you," roars out Dobbin, 
springing to a leaden inkstand, and looking so wicked, that Mr. Cuff 
paused, turned down bis coat sleeves again, put his hands into his pockets, 
and walked away with a sneer. But he never meddled personally with the 
grocer's boy after that ; though we must do him the justice to say he always 
spoke of 'Mi, Dobbin with contempt behind his back. 

Some time after this interview, it happened that Mr. Cuff, on a sun- 
shiny afternoon, was in the neighbourhood of poor William Dobbin, who 
was lying under a tree in the play-ground, spelling over a favourite copy 
of the Arabian Nights which he had — apart from the rest of the school. 

who were pursuing their various sports — quite lonely, and almost happy. 
If people would but leave children to themselves ; if teachers would 
cease to bully them ; if parents would not insist upon directing their 
thoughts, and dominating their feelings— those feelings and thoughts 
which are a mystery to all (for how much do you and I know of each 
other, of our children, of our fathers, of our neighbour, and how for more 
beautiful and sacred are the thoughts of the poor lad or gurl whom 
you govern likely to be, than those of the dull and world-corr apted 

D 2 


person who rules him ?) — ^if, I say, parents and masters would leave their 
children alone a little more, — ^small harm would accrue, although a less 
quantity of aa inpr€B9enti might be acquired. 

Well, William Dobbin had for once forgotten the world, and was away 
with Sindbad the Sailor in the Valley of Diamonds, or with Prince What- 
dyecallem and the Fairy Peribanou in that delightful cavern where the 
Mnce found her, and whither we should all like to make a torn* ; when 
shrill cries, as of a little fellow weeping, woke up his pleasant reverie ; 
and, looking up, he saw Cuff before him, belabouring a little boy. 

It was the lad who had peached upon him about the grocer's cart ; but 
he bore little malice, not at least towards the young and small. '* How 
dare you, sir, break the bottle ? " says Cuff to the Httle urchin, swinging 
a yellow cricket-stump over him. 

The boy had been instructed to get over the play-ground wall (at a 
selected spot where the broken-glass had been removed from the top, and 
niches made convenient in the brick); to run a quarter of a mile ; to purchase 
a pint of rum-shrub on credit ; to brave all the Doctor's outlying spies, 
and to clamber back into the play-ground again ; during the performance 
of which feat, his foot had slipt, and the bottle was broken, and the shrub 
had b^n spilt, and his pantaloons had been damaged, and he appeared 
before his employer a perfectly guilty and treml^ng, though harmless, 

" How dare you, sir, break it P" says Cuff ; " you blundering Kttle thief. 
You drank the shrub, and now you pretend to have broken the bottle. 
Hold out your hand, sir." 

Down came the stump with a great heavy thump on the child's hand. 
•A moan followed. Dobbin looked up. The Prince Peribanou had fled 
into the inmost cavern with Prince AWed : the Hoc had wliisked away 
Sindbad the Sailor out of the Valley of Diamonds out of sight, far into the 
clouds ; and there was every-day life before honest WilHam ; and a big boy 
beating a little one without cause. 

" Hold out your other hand, sir,** roars Cuff to his little school-fellow^ 
whose face was distorted with oain. Dobbin quivered, and gathered him- 
self up in his narrow old clothes. 

•* Take that, you little devil ! " cried Mr. Cuff, and down came the wicket 
again on the child's hand. — ^Don't be horrified, ladies, every boy at a pub- 
lic school has done it. Your children wiU so do and be done by, in all 
probability. Down came the wicket again ; and Dobbin started up. 

I can't teU what his motive was. Torture in a public school is as much 
licensed as the knout in Kussia. It would be ungentlemanHke (m a 
manner) to resist it. Perhaps Dobbin's foolish soul revolted against that 
exercise of tyranny ; or perhaps he had a hankering feeling of revenge in 
his mind, and longed to measure himself against that splendid bully and 
tyrant, who had all the glory, pride, pomp, circumstance, banners flying, 
drums beating, guards saluting, in the place. Whatever may have been 
his incentive, however, up he sprang, and screamed out, " Hold off, Cuff; 
don't bully that child any more ; or I 'U " 

" Or you 'U, what ? " Cuff asked in amazement at this interruption. 
" Hold out your hand, you little beast." 


" I '11 give you the worst tlirashing you ever had in your life/* Dobbin 
said, in reply to the first part of Cuff's sentence; and little Osborne, 
gasping and in tears, looked up with wonder and incredulity at seeing this 
waging champion put up suddenly to defend him : while Cuff's astonish- 
ment WB9 BrmHj leas* !Faacy our late monarch George III. when he 
heard of the revolt of ^& KheHi American colonies : fancy brazen Goliah 
when little David stepped forward aadLdaimed a meeting; and you have 
the feelings of Mr. Beginald Cuff when this Na^oiiire was proposed to him. 

'/ After school," says he, of course; after a pause and a look, as much as 
to say, 'Make your will, and communicate your best wislte to your friends 
between this time and that.* 

"As you please,'* Dolbbin said. "You must be my bottle-holder, 

" WeU, if you like," little Osborne replied ; for you see his papa kept a 
carriage, and he was rather ashamed of his champion. 

Yes, when the hour of battle came, he was almost ashamed to say, " Go 
it. Pigs ;" and not a single other boy in the place uttered that cry for the 
first two or three rounds of this famous combat ; at the commencement of 
which the scientific Cttff^ with a contemptuous smile on his face, and as 
light and as gay as if he was at a ball, planted his blows u^n his adver* 
sary, and floored that unlucky champion three times runnmg. At each 
fall there was a cheer ; and everybody was anxious to have the honour of 
offering the conqueror a knee. 

" What a licking I shall get when it's over," young Osborne thought, 
pickiiig up his inan. " You'd best give in," he said to Dobbin ; " it's only 
a thrashing, Figs, and you know I'm used to it." But Figs, aU whose 
limbs were in a quiver, and whose nostrils were breathing rage, put his 
little bottle-holder aside, and went in for a fourth time. 

As he did not in the least know how to parry the blows that were aimed at 
himself, and Cuff had begun the attack on the three preceding occasions, 
without ever allowing his enemy to strike, I^gs now determined that he 
would commence the engagement by a charge on Ids own part ; and accord- 
ingly, being a left-handed man, brought that arm into action, and hit out 
a couple of times with aU Ms might--once at Mr. Cuff's left eye, and once 
on his beautifiil Boman nose. 

Cuff went down this time, to the astomshment of the assembly. " Well 
hit, by Jove," says little Osborne, with the air of a connoisseur, clapping 
his man on the back. " Give it him with the left, Figs, my boy." 

Figs's left made terrific play during all the rest of the combat. Cuff 
went down every time. At the sixth round, there were almost as many 
fellows shouting out, " Go it. Figs," as there were youths exclaiming, " Go 
it. Cuff." At the twelfth round the latter champion was all abroad, as the 
saying is, and had lost all presence of mind and power of attack or defence. 
Figs, on the contrary, was as calm as a quaker. His face being quite pale, 
his eyes shining open, and a great cut on his under lip bleeding profusely, 
gave this young fellow a fierce and ghastly air, which perhaps struck terror 
into many spectators. Nevertheless, his intrepid adversary prepared to 
close for the thkteenth time. 


If I had the pen of a Napier, or a Bell*s Life, I should like to describe 
this combat properly. It was the last charge of the Guard — (that is, U 
would have been, only Waterloo had not yet taken place) — it was Ney's 
column breasting the hill of La Haye Sainte, bristling with ten thousand 
bayonets, and crowned with twenty eagles — ^it was the shout of the beef- 
eating British, as leaping down the hiU they rushed to hug the enemy in 
the savage arms of battle — ^in other words. Cuff coming up full of pluck, 
but quite reeling and groggy, the Fig-merchant put in his left as usual on 
his adversary's nose, and sent him down for the last time. 

" I think that will do for him," Figs said, as his opponent dropped as 
neatly on the green as I have seen Jack Spot's ball plump into the pocket 
at billiards ; and the fact is, when- time was called, Mr. Keginald Cuff was 
not able, or did not choose, to stand up again. 

And now all the boys set up such a shout for Figs as would make you 
think he had been their darling champion through the whole battle ; and 
as absolutely brought Dr. Swishtail out of his study, curious to know -the 
cause of the uproar. He threatened to flog Figs violently, of course ; 
but Cuff, who had come to himself by this time, and was washing his 
wounds, stood up and said, " It*s my fault, sir — not Figs* — ^not Dobbin's. 
I was bullying a little boy ; and he served me right." By which magna- 
nimous speech he not only saved his conqueror a whipping, but got back 
all his ascendancy over the boys which his defeat had nearly cost him. 

Young Osborne wrote home tp his parents an account of the transaction. 

'' Sugarcane ffotue, Michmond, March, 18—. 
** Deah Mama, — ^I hope you are quite well. I should be much obliged 
to you to send me a cake and five shillings. There has been a fight here 
between Cuff & Dobbin. Cuff, you know, was the Cock of the School. 
They fought thirteen rounds, and Dobbin Licked. So Cuff is now Only 
Second Cock. The fight was about me. Cuff was licking me for breaking 
a botUe of milk, and Figs wouldn't stand it. We call him Figs because 
Ms father is a Grocer— Figs & Kudge, Thames St., City — I think as he 
fonght for me you ought to buy your Tea & Sugar at his father's. Cuff 
^es home every Saturday, but can't this, because he has 2 Black Eyea. 
He has a white Pony to come and fetch him, and a groom in livery on a 
bay mare. I wish my Papa would let me have a Pony, and I am, 

" Your dutiful Son, 

'' Geoege Sedlet Osbobne. 

"P.S. Give my love to little Emmy. I am cutting her out a Coach 
in cardboard." 

In consequence of Dobbin's victory, his character rose prodigiously in 
the estimation of all his schoolfellows, and the name of Figs which had 
been a byword of reproach became as respectable and popular a nickname 
as any other in use in the school " After aD, it 's not his fault that his 
father 's a grocer," George Osborne said, who, though a little chap, had a 
very high popularity junong the Swishtail youth ; and his opinion was 
received with great applause. It w£te voted low to sneer at Dobbin about 


this accident of birth, "Old Pigs" grew to be a name of kindness and 
endearment ; and the sneak of an uslier jeered at idm no longer. 

And Dobbin's spirit rose with bis altered circamstanoes. He made 
wonderful advances in scholastic learning. The superb Cuff himself, at 
whose condescension Dobbin could only blush and wonder, helped him on 
with his Latin verses ; " coached " him in play-hours ; carried him trium- 
phantly out of the little-boy class into the middle-sized form ; and even 
there got a fair place for him. It was discovered, that although dull at 
classical learning, at mathematics he was uncommonly quick. To the 
contentment of all, he passed third in algebra, and got a French prize-book 
at the public midsummer examination. You should have seen his mother's 
face when Telemaque (that delicious romance) was presented to him by the 
Doctor in the face of the whole school and the parents and company, with an 
inscription to Gxdiehno Dobbin. All the boys clapped hands in token 
of applause and sympathy. His blushes, his stumbles, his awkwardness, 
and the number of feet which he crushed as he went back to his place, 
who shall describe or calculate? Old Dobbin, his father, who now 
respected him for the first time, gave him two guineas pubUcly ; most of 
-which he spent in a general tuck-out for the sdhool : and he came back in 
a tail-coat after the holidays. 

Dobbin was much too modest a young fellow to suppose that this 
happy.change in all his drcumstances arose from his own generous and 
manly disposition : he chose, from some perverseness, to attribute his good 
fortune to the sole agency and benevolence Of little George Osboime, to 
whom henceforth he vowed such a love and affection as is only felt by 
children — such an affection, as we read Jn the charming fairy-book, 
uncouth Orson had for splendid young Valentine his conqueror. He 
'flung {himself down at little Osborne's feet, and loved him. Even 
before they were acquainted, he had admired Osborne in secret. Now he 
-was his valet, his dog, his man Friday. He believed Osborne to be the 
possessor of every peifection, to be the handaomest, the bravest, the most 
adive, the cleverest, the most generous ©f created boys. He shared his 
money with him: bought him uncountable presents of knives, pendl-cases, 
gold seals, toffee. Little Warblers, and romantijc books, with large coloured 
pictures of knights and robbers, in many of which latter you might read 
inscriptions to George Sedley Osborne, Esquire, from his attached friend 
William Dobhin — ^the which tokens of. homage George received very 
graciously, as became his superior merit. 

So that when Lieutenant Osborne, coming to Eussell Square on the 
day of the Vauxhall party, said to the ladies, *' Mrs. Sedley, Ma'fun, I 
hope you have room ; I 've asked Dobbin of ours to come and dine here, 
aud-^ with us. to Yauxhall. He 's almost as modest as Jos.*' 

'* Modesty ! pooh," said the stout gentleman, casting a vainqueur look 
at Jifiss Sharp. 

"-He is— ^bnt you are incomparably more graceful, Sedley," Osborne 
added, laughing. " I met hdm at the Bedford, when I went to look for 
you^ and I told him that Miss Amelia was came home, and that we were 
all bent on going oixt for a ni^t's pleasuring ; and that Mrs. Sedley had 


forgiven liis breaking the punch-bowl at the child's party. Don't you 
remember the catastrophe, Ma'am, seven years ago ? " 

" Over Mrs. Flamingo's crimson silk gown," said good-natured Mrs. 
Sedley. "What a gawky it was! And his sisters are not much more 
graceful. Lady Dobbin was at Highbury last night with three of them. 
Such figures ! my dears." 

" The Alderman 's very rich, isn't he ?" Osborne said archly. " Don't 
you think one of the daughters would be a good spec for 'me, Ma'am ? " 

" You foolish creature I Who would take y(w, I should like to know, 
with your yellow face ? And what can Alderman Dobbin have amongst 
fourteen?'^ ■ ' 

" Mine a yeUow face ? Stop till you see Dobbin. Why, he had the 
yellow fever three times ; twice at Nassau, and once at St. Kitts:" 

" Well, well ; yours is quite yellow enough for us.' Isn't it, Emmy ? " 
Mrs. Sedley said : 'at which speech Miss Amelia only made a smile and a 
blush ; and looking at Mr. George Osborne's pale interesting countenance, 
and those beautiful black, curling, shining whiskers,' which the young 
gentleman himself regiurded with no ordinary complacency/ she thought in 
her little heart, that in His Majesty's army, or in the wide wcnrld, &ere 
never was such a face or such a hero. "I don't care about Captain 
Dobbin's complexion,'- she said, " or about hifl Awkwardness. / shall 
always like him, I know;" her little reason being, That he was the friend 
and champion of George. 

" There 's not a finer fellow in the service,^' Osborne said, " nor a facU 
ter officer, though he is not an Adonis, certainly." And he looked towards 
the glass himself with mdch mupet/; and in so doing, caught Miss Sharp's 
eye fixed keenly upon him, iat which he blushed a little, and Bebeoca 
thought in her heart, ' M, mm beau Monsieur / I think I have if our gage * 
— ^the little artful minx 1 ■' 

That evening, when Amelia came tripping into the drawing-room in a 
white muslin frodc, prepared for conquest at Yauxhall, singing like a 
lark, and as fresh as a rose — ^a very tall ungainly gentleman, with large 
hands and feet, and large ears, set off by a dosely cropped head of blad^ 
hair, and in the hideous military frogged coat and cocked-hat of those 
times,' advanced to meet her, and made her one of the dumaiest bows that 
was ever performed by a mortal. 

This was no other than Captain William Dobbin, of His Majesty's 

Eegiment of Foot, returned from yellow fever, in the West Indies, to 
which the fortune of the service had ordered Ids regiment, whilst so many 
of his gallant comrades were reaping glory in the Peninsula. 

He had arrived with a knock so very timid and quiet, that it was inau- 
dible to the ladies upstairs : otherwise, you may be sure Miss Amelia would 
never have been so bold as to come singing into the room. As it was, the 
sweet fresh little voice went right into the Captain's heart, and nestled 
there. When she held out her hand for him to shake, before he enve- 
loped it in his own, he paused, and tiiought— " Well, is it possible— are 
you the little maid I remember in the pink frock, such a short time ago — 
the night I upset the puncy)owl, just after I was gazetted. Are you the 
little girl that George Osborne said should marry him ? What a blooming 



young creature you seem, and what a prize the rogue has got 1" All this 
he thought, before he took Amelia's hand into his own, and as he let his 
cocked-hat fall. 

His history since he left school, until the very moment when we have 
the pleasure of meeting him again, although not fiilly narrated, has yet, I 
think, been indicated sufficiently for an ingenious reader by the conversa- 
tion in the last page. Dobbin, the despised grocer, was Alderman Dobbin — 
Alderman Dobbin was Colonel of the City light Horse, then burning with 
military ardour to resist the French Invasion. Colonel Dobbin's corps, 
in which old Mr. Osborne himself was but an indifferent corporal, had 
been reviewed by the Sovereign and the Duke of York ; and the colonel 
and alderman had been knighted. His son had entered the army : and 
young Osborne followed presently in the same regiment. They had served 
in the West Indies and in Canada. Their regiment had just come home, 
and the attachment of Dobbin to Greorge Osborne was as warm and 
generous now, as it had been, when the two were schoolboys. 

So these worthy people sat down to dinner presently. They talked 
about war and glory, and Boney and Lord Wellington, and the last 
Gazette. In those famous days every gazette had a victory in it, and the 


two gallant young men longed to see their own names in the glorious list, 
and cursed their unlucky fate to belong to a regiment which had been away 
from the chances of honour: Miss Sharp kindled with this exciting talk, 
but Miss Sedley trembled and grew quite faint as she heard it. A&. Jos 
told several of his tiger-hunting stories, finished the one about Miss Cut- 
ler and Lance the surgeon : helped Eebecca to everything on the table, 
and himself gobbled and drank a great deal. 

He sprang to open the door for the ladies, when they retired, with the 
most killing grace — and coming back to the table, filled himself bumper 
after bumper of claret, which he swallowed with nervous rapidity. 

" He 's priming himself," Osborne whispered to Dobbin, and at length 
the hour and the carriage arrived for VauxhaJL 



KNOW tliat the tune I am piping is a very mild one, 
(althougli there are some terrific chapters coming 
presently) and must beg the good-natured reader to 
remember, that we are only discoursing at present, 
about a stock-broker's family in Bussell-square, who 
are taking walks, or luncheon, or dinner, or talking 
and making love as people do in common life, and 
without a single passionate and wonderful incident to 
mark the progress of their loves. The argument 
stands thus — Osborne in love with Amelia, has asked 
an old friend to dinner and to Vauxhall — Jos Sedley 
is in love vnth Eebecca. WiU he marry her ? That 
is the great subject now in hand. 

We might have treated this subject in the genteel, 
or in the romantic, or in the facetious manner. Sup- 
pose we had laid the scene in Grosvenor-square, with 
the very same adventures — ^would not some people have listened? Suppose 
we had shown how Lord Joseph Sedley fell in love, and the Marquis of 
Osborne became attached to Lady Amelia, with the full consent of the 
Duke, her noble father : or instead of the supremely genteel, suppose we 
had resorted to the entirely low, and described what was going on in 
Mr. Sedley's kitchen ; — ^how black Sambo was in love with the cook, (as 
indeed he was), and how he fought a battle with the coachman in her 
behalf; how the knife-boy was caught stealing a cold shoulder of mutton, 
and Miss Sedley's new femme de chamJbre refused to go to bed without a 
wax candle; such incidents naight be made to provoke much delightful 
laughter, and be supposed to represent scenes of " Mfe." Or if, on the 
contrary, we had taken a fancy for the terrible, and made the lover of the 
new femme de chambre a professional burglar, who bursts into the house 
with his band, slaughters black Sambo at the feet of his master, and carries 
off Amelia in her night-dress, not to be let loose again tiU the third volume, 
we should easily have constructed a tale of thrilfing interest, through the 
fiery chapters of which the reader should hurry, panting. Fancy this 
chapter having been headed 


The night was dark and wild — ^the clouds black — ^black — ink-black . The 
wild wind tore the chimney-pots from the roofs of the old houses and 
sent the tiles whirling and crashing through the desole,te streets. No soul 
braved that tempest— 4he watchmen shraBok into their boxes, whither the 
searching rain followed them — ^where the crashing thunderbolt fell and de- 
stroyed them — one had so been slain orpposite the Foundhng. A scorched 
gaberdine, a shivered lantern, a staff rent in twain by the flash, were all that 



remained of stout Will Steadfast. A hackney coacliman had been blown 
off his coach-box, in Southampton Eow — and whither ? But the whirl- 
wind tells no tidings of its victim, save his parting screun as he is borne 
onwards ! Horrible night ! It was daric, pHch dark ; no moon, No, 
no. No moon. Not a star. Not a little feeble, twinkling, solitary star. 
There had been one at early evening, but he showed his face, shuddering, 
for a moment, in the black heaven, and then rjetreated back. 

One, two, three I It is the signal that Black Vizard had agreed on. 

"Mofy! is that your snum?" said a voice from the area. "I'll 
gully the dag and'bimbole the clicky in a snuffkin." 

** Nuffle your clod, and beladle your glumbanions," said Vizard, with 
a dreadful oath. " This way, men ; if they screak, out with your snickers 
and slick ! Look to the pewter room, Blowser. . Ton, Mark, to the old 
gaff's mopus box ! and 1," added he, in a lower but more horrible voice, 
" I wiU look to Amelia 1 " 

There was a dead silence. " Ha ! " said Vizard, " was that the click of 
a pistol?" 

Or suppose we adopted the genteel rose-water style. The Marquis of 
Osborne Im just despatched his jpetit Hgre with a biUet-doux to the Lady 



The dear creature has received it from the hands of htxfemme de chambre. 
Mademoiselle Anastasie. 

Dear Marquis I what amiable politeness I His lordship's note contains 
the wished-for invitation tq Devonshire House ! 

" Who is that monstroua fine girl," said the SemUlant Prince G — ^rge 
of C — ^mbr— dge, at a mansion in Piccadilly the same evening (having 
just arrived from the omnibus at the opera.) " My. dear Sedley, in the 
name of all the Cupids, introduce me to her !** 

"Her name, Monmgneur^^ said Lord Joseph, bowing gravely, "is 

" Vom avez alors un Men beau nom,'\ said the young Prince, turning on 
his heel rather disappointed, and treading on the foot of an old gentleman 
who stood behind, in deep admiration of the beautiful Lady Amelia. 

" Trent emiUe tonnerres / " shouted the victim, writhing under the 
agome du moment, 

"I beg a thousand pardons of your Grace," said the young etourdiy 
blushing, and bending low his fair curls. He had trodden on the toe of 
the great Captain of the age 1 

" Oh, Devonshire I " cried the young Prince, to a tall and good-natured 
nobleman, whose features proclaimed him of the blood of the Cavendishes. 
" A word with you I Have you still a mind to part with your diamond 
necklace ? " 

** I have sold it for two hundred and fifty thousand pounds, to Prince 
Easterhazy here." 

" Und das war gar nicht tkeuer, potztausend / ^' exclaimed the princely 
Hungarian, &c., &c., fee. . 

Thus you see, ladies, how this story might have been written, if the 
author had but a mind ; for, to tell the truth, he is just as familiar with 
Newgate as with the palaces of our revered aristocracy, and has seen the 
outside of both. But as I don't understand the language or manners of 
the Bookeiy, nor that polyglot conversation which, according to the fashion- 
able novelists, is spoken by the leaders of- ton; we miist, if you please, 
preserve our middle course modestly, amidst those scenes and personages 


with which we are most familiar. In a word, this chapter about VauxhaU 

woiQd have been so exceeding short but for the above little disquisition, that 

it scarcely would have deserved to be called a chapter at all. And yet it is 

i a chapter, and a very important one too. Are not there little chapters in 

I everybody's life, that seem to be nothing, and yet affect all the rest of the 

^ history? 

Let us then step into the coach with the Kussell-square party, and be 
off to the Gardens. There is barely room between Jos and Miss Sharp, 
who are on the front seat. Mr. Osborne sitting bodkin opposite, between 
Captain Dobbin and Amelia. 

Every soul in the coach agreed, that on that night, Jos would propose to 
make Kebecca Sharp Mrs. Sedley. The parents at home had acquiesced 
in the arrangement, though, between ourselves, old Mr » Sedley had a feeling 
very much akin to contempt for his son. He said he was vain, selfish, 
lazy, and effeminate. He could not endure his airs as a man of fashion, 
and laughed heartily at his pompOus braggadocio stories. " I siaU leave 
the fellow half my property," he said ; " and he will have, besides, plenty 
of his own ; but as I am perfectly sure that if you, and I, and his sister 
were to die to-morrow he would say * Good Gad ! * and eait his dinner just 
as well as usual, I am not going to make myself anxious about him. Let 
him marry whom he likes. It 's no aflfeir of mine." 

Amelia, on the other hand, as became a young woman of her prudence 
and temperament, woa quite enthusiastic for the match. Once or twice 
Jos had been on the point of saying something very important to her, to 
which she was most willing to lend an ear, but the fet feUow couid not be 
brought to unbosom lumseK of his great secret, and very much to his 
sister's disappointment he only rid himself of a large sigh md turned 

This mystery served to keep Amelia's gentle bosom in a perpetual flutter 
of excitement. K she did not speak wifii Eebecca on the tender subject, 
she compensated herself with long and intimate conversations with Mrs. 
Blenkinsop, the housekeeper, who dropped some hints to the lady's-maid, 
who may have cursorily mentioned it to the cook,- who carried the news, I 
have no doubt, to aU the tradesmen, so that Mr. Jos's marriage was now 
talked off by a very considerable number of persons in the EosseE-square 

It was, of course, Mrs. Sedley's opinion that her son would demean 
^ himself by a marriage with an artist's daughter. "But, lor', Ma'am," 
gaculated Mrs. Blenkinsop, " we was only grocers when we married Mr. 
S., who was a stock-broker's clerk, and we hadn't five hundred pounds 
among us, and we're rich enough now." And Amelia was entirely of this 
opinion, to which, gradually, the good-natmred Mrs, Sedley was brought. 

Mr. Sedley was neutraL " Let Jos marry whom he likes," he said ; 
'* it 's no affair of mine. This girl has no fortune ; no more had Mrs. 
Sedley. She seems good-hamoured and clever, and wiU keep him in order, 
perhaps. Better she, my dear, than a black Mrs. Sedley, and a dozen of 
mahogany grandchildren." 

So that everything seemed to smile upon Eebecca's fortunes. She took 
Jos's arm, as a matter of course, on going to dinner ; she had sate by him 


ou the box of his open carriage (a most tremendous '' buck ** he was, as 
he sat there, serene, in state, driving his greys), and though nobody said a 
word on the subject of the marriage, everybody seemed to understand it. 
All she wanted was the proposal, and ah 1 how Eebecca now felt the 
want of a mother ! — a dear tender mother, who would have managed the 
business in ten minutes, and, in the course of a little delicate confidential 
conversation, would have extracted the interesting avowal from the bash- 
M lips of the young man I 

Such was the state of affairs as the carriage crossed Westminster-Abridge. 

The party was' landed at the Eoyal Gardens in due time. As the 
majestic Jos stepped out of the creaking vehicle the crowd gave a cheer 
for the fat gentleman, who blushed and looked very big and mighty, as he 
walked away with Eebecca under his arm. George, of course, took charge 
of Amelia. She looked as happy as a rose-tree in sunshine. 

" I say, Dobbin," says Greorge, "just look to the shawls and things, 
there 's a good fellow." And so while he paired off with Miss Sedley, and 
Jos squeezed through the gate into the Gardens with Eebecca at his side, 
honest Dobbin contented himself by giving an arm to the shawls, and by 
paying at the door for the whole party. 

He walked very modes% behind them. He was not willing to spoil 
sport. About Eebecca and Jos he did not care a fig. But he thought 
Amelia worthy even of the brilliant George Osborne, and as he saw that 
good-looking couple, threading the walks to the gurl's delight and wonder, 
he watched her artless happiness with a sort of fjEitherly pleasure. Perhaps 
he felt that he would have liked to have something on his own arm besides 
a shawl (the people laughed at seeing the gawky young officer carrying this 
female burthen) ; but WiDiam Bobbin was very little addicted to selfish 
calculation at all; and so long as his friend was enjoying- himself, how 
should he be discontented ? And the truth ift, that of all the delights of the 
Gardens ; of the hundred thousand ex^a lamps, which were always lighted ; 
the fiddlers, in cocked hats, who played ravishing melodies under the gilded 
cockle-shell in the midst of the gardens ; the singers, both of comic and 
sentimental ballads, who charmed the ears there ; the country dances, 
formed by bouncing cockneys and cockneyesses, and executed amidst jump- 
ing, thumping, and laughter ; the signal which announced that Madame 
Saqui was about to mount skyward on a slack-rope ascending to the stars ; 
the hermit that always sat in the illuminated hermitage ; the dark walks, 
so favourable to the interviews of young lovers ; the pots of stout handed 
about by the people in the shabby old hveries ; and the twinkling boxes, 
in which the happy feasters made-believe to eat slices of almost invisible 
ham ; — of all these things, and of the gentle Simpson, that kind smiling 
idiot, who, I daresay, presided even then over the place — Captain William 
Dobbin did not take the shghtest notice. 

He carried about Amelia's white cashmere shawl, and having attended 
under the gilt cockle shell, while Mrs. Salmon performed the Battle of 
Borodino, (a savage Cantata against the Corsican upstart, who had lately 
met with his Eussian reverses)— Mr. Dobbin tried to hum it ais he walked 
away, and found he was humming — ^the tune which Amelia Sedley sang 
on ^e stairs, as she came down to dinner. 



He burst out laugliing at himself; for the truth is, he could sing no 
better than an owl. 

It is to be understood, as a matter of course, that our young people, 
being in parties of two and two, made the most solemn promises to keep 
together during the evening, and separated in ten minutes afterwards. 
Parties at Vauxhall always did separate, but 'twas only to meet again at 
supper-time, when they could talk of their mutual adventures in the 

What were the adventures of Mr. Osborne and Miss Amelia ? That is 
a secret. But be sure of this — they were perfectly happy, and correct in 
their behaviour ; and as they had been in the habit of being together any- 
time these fifteen years, their tSte-a-tSte offered no particular novelty. 

But when Miss Bebecca Sharp and her stout companion lost themselves 

in a solitary walk, in which there were not above five score more of couples 
similarly straying, they both felt that the situation was extremely tender 
and critical, and now or never was the moment, Miss Sharp thought, to 
provoke that declaration which was trembling on the timid lips of Mr.. 
Sedley. They had previously been to the panorama of Moscow, where a 
rude fellow, treading on Miss Sharp's foot, caused her to fall back with a 
little shriek into the arms of Mr. Sedley, and this ^ttle incident increased 


the tenderness and confidence of that gentleman to snch a degree, that he 
told her several of his favourite Indian stories over again for, at least, 
the sixth time. 

" How I should like to see India ! " said Bebecca. 

*' Should you ? " said Joseph, with a most killing tenderness ; and was 
no doubt about to follow up this artful interrogatory by a question still 
more tender (for he puffed and panted a great deal, and Bebecca's hand, 
which was placed near his heart, could count the feverish pulsations of 
that organ), when, oh, provoking ! the bell rang for the iireworks, and, 
a great scuffling and running taking place, these interesting lovers were 
obliged to follow in the stream of people. 

Captain Dobbin had some thoughts of joining the party at supper : as, 
in truth, he found the VauxhaU amusemeht not particularly lively — but he 
paraded twice before the box where the now united couples were met, and 
nobody took any notice of him. Covers were laid for four. The mated 
pairs were prattling away quite happily, and Dobbin knew he was as clean 
forgotten as if he had never existed in this world. 

" I should only be de trap/' said the Captain, looking at them rather 
wistfully. " I'd best go and talk to the hermit," — ^and so he strolled off 
out of the hum of men, and noise, and clatter of the banquet, into the 
dark walk, at the end of which Hved that well-known pasteboard Solitary. 
It wasn't very good fun for Dobbin-^aind, indeed, to be alone at Vauxhall, 
I have found, from my own experience, to be one of the most dismal 
sports ever entered into by a bachelor. 

The two couples were perfectly happy then in their box: where the 
most delightful and intimate conversation took place. Jos was in his 
glory, ordering about the waiters with great majesty. He made the salad; 
and uncorked the Champagne ; and carved the chickens ; and ate and 
drank the greater part of the refreshments on the tables. Finally, he 
insisted upon having a bowl of rack punch ; everybody had rack punch at 
Vauxhall. ** Waiter, rack punch." 

That bowl of rack punch was the cause of all this history. And why 
not a bowl of rack punch as well as any other cause ? Was not a bowl of 
prussic acid the cause of fair Rosamond's retiring from the world ? Was 
not a bowl 9f wine the cause of the demise of Alexander the Great, or at 
least, does not Dr. Lempriere say so ? — so did this bowl of rack punch 
influence the fates of all the principal characters in this " Novel without a 
Hero," which we are now relating. It influenced their life, although most 
of them did not taste a drop of it. 

The young ladies did not drink it ; Osborne did not like it; and the 
consequence was that Jos, that fat gourmand, drank up the whole con* 
tents of the bowl ; and the consequence of his drinking up the whole 
contents of the bowl was, a liveliness which at first was astonishing, and 
then became almost painfhl; for he talked and laughed so loud as to 
bring scores of listeners round the box, much to the confusion of the 
innocent party within it *, and, volunteering to sing a song (which he did 
in that maud^ high-key peculiar to gentlemen ia an inebriated state), he 
almost drew away the audience who were gathered round the musicians 



in the gilt scollop-shell, and received from his hearers a great deal of 

" Brayvo, Fat un!" said one; " Angcore, Daniel Lambert ! " said 
another ; " What a figure for the tight-rope !" exclaimed another wag, to 
the inexpressible alarm of the ladies, and the great ai^er of Mr. Osborne. 

" ¥or Heaven's sake, Jos, let us get up and go," cried that gentleman, 
and the young women rose. 

" Stop, my dearest diddle-diddle-darling," shouted Jos, now as bold asr 
a lion, and clasping Miss Eebecc£( round the waist. Eebecca started, but 
she could not get away her hand. The laughter outside redoubled- Joa 
continued to drink, to make love, and to sing; and, winking and waving 
his glass gracefidly to his audience, challenged all or any to come in and 
take a share of his punch. 

Mr. Osborne was- just on the point of knocking down a gentleman in 
top-boots, who proposed to take advantage of this invitation, Mid a com- 
motion seemed to b^ .'inevitable, when by the greatest good luek a gentle- 
man of the name of Dobbin,, who had been walking about the gardens, 
stepped up to th^' hot. • - * Be ojff, you foolth I " said this gentleman — 
shouldering off a great number of the crowd, who vanished presently 
before his cocked hat and fierce appearance — and he entered the box in a 
most agitated state. 

''Good Heavens I Dobbin, where have you been ?" Osborne said, seizing 
the white cashmere shawl from his friend's arm, and huddling up Amelia 
in it. — " Make yourself useftd, and take charge of Jos here, whilst I take 
the ladies to the carriagei" 

Jos was for rising to interfere — ^but a single push from Osborne's finger 
sent him pufiing back into his. seat again, and the lieutenant was enabled 
to remove the ladies in safety. Jos kissed his hand to them as they 
retreated, and hiccupped out Bless you 1 Bless you ! Then seizing Cap- 
tain^Dobbin's hand, and. weeping in the most pitiful way, he confided to 
that gentleman the secret of his loves. He adored that giii who had just 
gone but'; he had broken her heart, he knew he had, by his conduct ; he 
would marry her next morning. at St. George's Hanover Square; he'd 
knoek up the Archbishop of Canterbury at Lambeth : he would, by Jove ! 
and have him in readines^s; and, acting on this hint. Captain Dobbin 
shrewdly induced him to leave the gardens and hasten to Lambeth palace, 
and, when once out of the gates, easily conveyed this fat bacchaaialian 
into a haekney-coach, which deposited him safely at his lodgings. 

George Osborne conducted the girls home in safety: and when the door 
was closed upon them, and as he walked across Eussell-square, laughed so^ 
as to astonish the watchman. Amelia looked very niefolly at her Mend, 
as they went up-stairs, and kissed her, and went to bed without any more 

** He must propose to-morrow," thought Eebecca. " He called me his 
soul's darling, four times ; he squeezed my hand in Amelia's presence. He 
must propose^ to-morrow." And so thought Amelia, too. And I dare say 
she thought of the di'css she was to wear as bride's-maid, and of the 

'''a. ^ r\j/'4/ ^/? (^ ./'^^/^ // /'..r■c^^'//^*:J//y^\ 



presents whidi she should make to her nice little sdster-in-law, and of a 
subsequent ceremony in which she herself might play a principal part, &c., 
and &c., and &c., and &e. 

Oh, ignorant yomsg creatures I How little do you know the effect of 
Rudt-ponch ! What is the rack in the punch, at idght, to the rack in the 
head of a morning ? To this truth I can vouch as a man ; there is no 
hotdache in the world like that caused by Vauxhall punch. Through the 
lapse of twenty years, I can remember the consequence of two glasses ! — 
two wme>glasM8 ! — but two, upon the honour of a gentleman ; axid Joseph 
Sedley, who had a Hver comphont, had swallowed at least a quart of the 
abominable mixture. 

That next morning, which Kebecca thought was to dawn upon her 
fortune, found Sedley groaning in agonies which the pen refuses to describe. 

Soda-water was not invented yiet. Small beer — will it be believed ! — ^was the 
only drink with which unhappy gentlemen soothed the fever of theur pre- 
Tious night's potation. With this mild beverage before him, George 
Osborne found the ex-collector of Boggley woUah groaning on the sofa at 
hia lodgings. Dobbin was akeady in the room, good-naturedly tending 
his patient of the night before. The two officers looking at the prostrate 
Bacchanalian, and askance at each other, exchanged the most frightftd 
sympaiiietic grins. Even Sedley's valet, the moat solemn and correct of 
gentkmrai, with the muteness and gravity of an undertaker, could hardly 
keep his countenance in order, as he looked at his imfortunate master. 

"Mr. Sedley was uncommon wild last night, sir," he whispered in 
confidence to Osborne, as the latter mounted the stair. " He wanted to 
fight the 'admey-coachman, sir. The Capting was obliged to bring him 
up stairs in his harms like a babby." A momentary snnle flickered over 
Mr. Brurfi's features as he spoke ; instantly, howeva*, they relapsed into 
their usual unfathomable calm, as he flung open the drawing-room door, 
and announced " Mr. Hosbin." 

" How are you, Sedley ? " that young wag began, after surveying his 

E 2 


victim. " No bones broke ? There *s a hackney-coachman down stairs 
with a black eye, and a tied up head, vowing he 'U have the law of you." 

"What do you mean, — ^law?" Sedley faintly asked. 

"For thrashing him last night — didn't he, Dobbin? You hit out, sir, 
like Molyneux. The watchman says he never saw a fellow go down so 
straight. Ask Dobbin." 

" You did have a round with the coachman," Captain Dobbin said, " and 
showed plenty of fight too." 

" And that fellow with the white coat at Vauxhall ! How Jos drove at 
him ! How the women screamed ! By Jove, sir, it did my heart good to 
see you. I thought you civilians had no pluck ; but / 'II never get in your 
way when you are in your cups, Jos." 

" I believe I 'm very terrible, when I *m roused," ejaculated Jos from the 
sofa, and made a grimace so dreary and ludicrous, that the Captain's 
politeness could restrain him no longer, and he and Osborne fired off a 
ringing volley of laughter. 

Osborne pursued his advantage pitilessly. He thought Jos a milksop. 
He had been revolving in his mind the marriage-question pending between 
Jos and Eebecca, and was not over-well pleased that a member of a family 
into which he, George Osborne, of the — ^th, was, going to many, should 
make a mesalliance with a little nobody — ^a little ^ipstart governess. " You 
hit, you poor old fellow?" said Osborne. " You terrible ? Why, man, 
you couldn't stand — ^you made everybody laugh in the Gardens, though 
you were crying yourself. You were maudlin, Jos. Don't you remember 
singing a song ? " 

"A what? "Jos asked. 

"A sentimental song, and calling Eosa, Bebecca, what's her name, 
Amelia's little friend — ^your dearest diddle, diddle, darling?" And this 
ruthless young fellow, seizing hold of Dobbin's hand, acted over the scene, 
to the horror of the original performer, and in spite of Dobbin's good- 
natured entreaties to him to have mercy. 

" Why should I spare him ? " Osborne said to his friend's remonstrances, 
when they quitted the invalid, leaving him under the hands of Doctor 
Glauber. " What the deuce right has he to give himself his patronizing 
airs, and make fools of us at Yauxhall ? Who 's this little school-girl that 
is ogling and making love to him ? Hang it, the family 's low enough 
already, without her, A governess is all very well, but I 'd rather have a 
lady for my sister-in-law. I 'm a liberal man ; but I 've proper pride, and 
know my own station : let her know hers. And I '11 take down that 
great hectoring Nabob, and prevent him from being made a greater fool 
than he is. That 's why I told him to look out, lest she brought an action 
against him." 

" I suppose you know best," Dobbin said, though rather dubiously. 
" You always were a Tory, and your family 's one of the oldest in England. 

" Come and see the girls, and make love to Miss Sharp yourself," the 
lieutenant here interrupted his friend ; hut Captain Dobbin declined to 
join Osborne in his daily visit to the young ladies in Kussell Square. 

As he walked down Southampton Kow, from Holbom, he laughed as 


he saw, at the Sedley Mansion, in two different stories, two heads on the 

The fact is, Miss Amelia, in the drawing-room balcony, was looking 
very eagerly towards the opposite side of the Square, where Mr. Osborne 
dwelt, on the watch for the lieutenant himself ; and Miss Sharp, from her 
little bed-room on the second-floor, was in observation until Mr. Joseph's 
great form should heave in sight. 

" Sister Anne is on the watch-tower," said he to Amelia, " but there's 
nobody coming ;" and laughing and enjoying the joke hugely, he described 
in the most ludicrous terms to Miss Sedley, the dismal condition of her 

" I think it 'a very cruel of you to laugh, George," she said, looking 
particularly unhappy ; but George only laughed the more at her piteous 
and discomfited mien, persisted in thinking the joke a most diverting one, 
and when Miss Sharp came down stairs, bantered her with a great deal of 
liveliness upon the effect of her charms on the fat civilian. 

" O Miss Sharp ! if you could but see him this morning," he said — 
" moaning in his flowered dressing-gown — ^writhing on his sofa ; if you 
could but have seen him lolling out his tongue to Glauber the apothecary." 
" See whom ?" said Miss Sharp. 

" Whom ? O whom P Captain Dobbin, of course, to whom we were all 
so attentive, by the way, last night." 

"We were very unkind to him," Emmy said, blushing very much. 
** I — ^I quite forgot him." 

" Of course you did," cried Osborne, stiQ on the laugh. " One can *t 
be always thinking about Dobbin, you know, Amelia. Can one. Miss 

" Except when he overset the glass of wine at dinner," Miss Sharp said, 
with a haughty air and a toss of the head, " I never gave the existence of 
Captain Dobbin one single moment's consideration." 

" Yery good. Miss Sharp, 111 tell him," Osborne said; and as he spoke 
Miss Sharp began to have a feeling of distrust and hatred towards this 
young officer, which he was quite unconscious of having inspired. " He 
is to make fim of me, is he ? " thought Eebecca. " Has he been laughing 
about me to Joseph ? Has he frightened him ? Perhaps he won't come." — 
A film passed over her eyes, and her heart beat quite thick. 

" You 're always joking," said she, smiling as innocently as she could. 
" Joke away, Mr. George ; there 's nobody to defend me" And George 
Osborne, as she walked away — and Amelia looked reprovingly at him — 
felt some little manly compunction for having inflicted any uimecessary 
unkindness upon this helpless creature. " My dearest Amelia," said he, 
" you are too good — ^too kind. You don't know the world. I do. And 
your little friend Miss Sharp must learn her station." 
" Don't you think Jos will—" 

" Upon my word, my dear, I don't know. He may, or may not. I 'm 
not his master. I only know he is a very foolish vain fdlow, and put my 
dear little giii into a very painful and awkward position last night. My 
dearest diddl»— diddle--darling l" He was off laughing again; and he did 
it 80 drolly that Emmy laughed too. 



All that day Jos never came. But Amelia had no fear about this ; for 
the little schemer had actually sent away the page, Mr. Sambo's aide-de- 
camp, to Mr. Joseph's lodgings, to ask for some book he had promised, 
and how he was ; and the reply through Jos's man, Mr. Brush, was, that 
his master was ill in bed, and had just had the doctor with him. He must 
come to-morrow, she thought, but she never had the courage to speak a 
word on the subject to Kebecca ; nor did that young woman herself allude 
to it in any way during the whole evening after the night at Vauxhall. 

The next day, however, as the two young ladies sate on the sofa, 
pretending to work, or to write letters, or to read novels. Sambo came into 
the room with his usual engaging grin, with a packet under his arm, and 
a note on a tray. " Note from Mr. Jos, Miss," says Sambo. 

How Amelia trembled as she op^ed it 1 

So it ran :— 

" Dear Amelia, — I send you the Orphan of the Forest. I was too 
ill to come yesterday. I leave town to-day for Cheltenham. Pray excuse 
me, if ybu can, to the amiable Miss Sharp, for my conduct at Vauxhall, 
and entreat her to pardon and forget every word I may have uttered when 
excited by that fatd supper. As soon as I have recovered, for my health 
is very much shaken, I shall go to Scotland for some months, and am 

" Truly yours, 

« Jos. Sedley." 


It was the death-warrant. All was over. Amelia did not dare to look 
at Bebecca's pale face and burning eyes, but she dropt the letter into her 
Mend's lap ; and got up, and went upstairs to her room, and cried her 
little heart out. 

, Bleokinsop, the housekeeper, there sought her presently with conso- 
lation; on whose shoulder Amelia- wept confidentially, and relieved herself 
a good deal. "Don't take on. Miss. I didn't like to tell you. But none 
of us in the house have liked her except at fust. I sor her with my own 
eyes reading your Ma's letters. Pinner says she's always about your 
trinket-box and drawers, and everybody's drawers, and she 's sure she *s 
put your white ribbing into her box." 

" I gave it her, I gave it her," Amelia said. 

But this did not alter Mrs. Blenkinsop's opinion of Miss Sharp. " I 
don't trust them governesses. Pinner, they 're neither one thing nor t'other. 
They give themselves the hairs and hupstarts of ladies, and their wages is 
no better than you nor me." 

It now became clear to every soul in the house, except poor Amelia, 
that Eebecca should take her departure, and high and low (always with 
the one exception) agreed that that event should take place as speedily as 
possible. Our good child ransacked all her drawers, cupboards, reticules, 
and gimcrack boxes — ^passed in review all her gowns, fichus, tags, bobbins, 
laces, silk stockings, and fallals — selecting this thing and that and the other, 
to make a Httle heap for Eebecca. And going to her Papa, that generous 
British merchant, who had promised to give her as many guineas as she 
was years old — she begged the old gentleman to give the money to dear 
Eebecca, who must want it, while she lacked for nothing. 
' She even made George Osborne contribute, and nothing loth (for he was 
as free-handed a young fellow as any in the army), he went to Bond 
Street, and bought the best hat and spencer that money could buy. 

" That 's George's present to you, Eebecca, dear," said Amelia, quite 
proud of the bandbox conveying these gifts.* " What a taste he has ! 
There 's nobody like him." 

" Nobody," Eebecca answered. " How thankful I am to him I" She 
was thinking in her heart, " It was George Osborne who prevented my 
marriage. — ^And she loved George Osborne accordingly. 

She made her preparations for departure with great equanimity ; and 
accepted all the kmd little Amelia's presents, after just the proper degree 
of hesitation and reluctance. She vowed eternal gratitude to Mrs. Sedley, 
of course ; but did not intrude herself upon that good lady too much, who 
was embarrassed, and evidently wishing to avoid her. She kissed Mr. 
Sedley's hand, when he presented her with the purse ; and asked permis- 
sion to consider him for the future as her kind, kind friend and protector. 
Her behaviour was so affecting that he was going to write her a checque 
for twenty pounds more ; but he restrained his feelings : the carriage was 
in waiting to take him to dinner; so he tripped away with a " God bless 
you, my dear. Always come here when you come to town, you know. — 
Drive to the Mansion House, James." 

* It -WBB the aatlior's intention, faithful to history, to depict all the characters of this 
tale in their proper costumes, as they wore them at the commencement of the century. 



Filially came the parting witli Miss Amelia, over which picture I intend 
to throw a veil. But after a scene in which one person was in earnest 
and the other a perfect performer — after the tenderest caresses, the most 
pathetic tears, the smelling-bottle, and some of the very best feelings of 
the heart, had been called into requisition — ^Bebecca and Amelia parted, 
the former vowing to love her friend for -ever and ever and ever. 

But wlien I remember the appearance of people in those days, and that an officer and lady 
Mrere actually habited like this — 

I have not the heart to disfigure my heroes and heroines by costumes so hideous ; and 
have, on the contrary, engaged a model of rank dressed according to the present fashion. 



MONG the most respected of tlie 
names beginning in C, which the 
Court -Guide contained, in the 
year 18 — , was that of Crawley, Sir 
Pitt, Baronet, Great Gaunt Street, 
and Queen's Crawley, Hants. This 
honourable name had figured con- 
stantly also in the Parliamentary 
list for many years, in conjunction 
with that of a number of other 
worthy gentlemen who sat in turns 
for the borough. 

It is related, with regard to the 
borough of Queen's Crawley, that 
Queen Elizabeth in one of her pro- 
gresses, stopping at Crawley to 
breakfast, was so delighted with 
some remarkably fine Hampshire 
beer which was then presented to 
her by the Crawley of the day (a 
handsome gentleman with a trim beard and a good leg), that she forthwith 
erected Crawley into a borough to send two members to Parliament ; and 
the place, from the day of thi^ illustrious visit, took the name of Queen's 
Crawley, which it holds up to the present moment. And though by the 
lapse of time, and those mutations which ages produce in empires, cities, 
and boroughs. Queen's Crawley was no longer so populous a place as it 
had been in Queen Bess's time — ^nay, was come down to that condition of 
borough which used to be denominated rotten — ^yet, as Sir Pitt Crawley 
would say with perfect justice in his elegant way, " Eotten ! be hanged — 
it produces me a good fifteen hundred a year." 

Sir Pitt Crawley (named after the great Commoner), was the son of 
Walpole Crawley, first Baronet, of the Tape and Sealing- Wax Office 
in the reign of George II., when he was impeached for peculation, as 
were a great number of other honest gentlemen of those days; and 
Walpole Crawley was, as need scarcely be said, son of John Churchill 
Crawley, named after the celebrated military commander of the reign of 
Queen Anne* The family tree (which hangs up at Queen's Crawley), 


furthermore mentions Charles Stuart, afterwards called Barebones Craw- 
ley's son, the Crawley of James the First's time, and finally, Queen 
Elizabeth's Crawley, who is represented as the foreground of the picture 
in his forked beard and armour. Out of his waistcoat, as usual, grows a 
tree, on the main branches of which the above illustrious names are in- 
scribed. Close by the name of Sir Pitt Crawley, Baronet (the subject 
of the present memoir), are written that of his brother, the Eeverend 
Bute Crawley (the great Commoner was in disgrace when the reverend 
gentleman was bom), rector of Crawley-cum-Snailby, and of various 
other male and female members of the Crawley family. 

Sir Pitt was first married to Grizzel, sixth daughter of Mungo Binkie, 
Lord Binkie, and cousin, in consequence of Mr. Dun das. She brought 
him two sons : Pitt, named not so much after his father as after the 
heaven-bom minister ; and Kawdon Crawley, from the Prince of Wales's 
friend, whom his Majesty Greorge IV. forgot so completely. Maay years 
after her ladyship's demise, Sir Pitt led to the altar Eosa, daughter of Mr. 
G. Grafton of Mudbury, by whom he had two daughters, for whose 
benefit Miss Eebecca Sharp was now engaged as governess. It will be 
seen that the young lady was come into a family of very gented «on- 
nexiona, and was about to move in a much more chstinguished drde thazi 
that humble one which she had just quitted in JBussell Square. 

She had received her orders to join her pupils, in a note whieb was 
written upon an old envelope, and which contained liie following words : — 

" Sir Pitt Crawley begs Miss Sharp and bag^dge may be hear on 
Tuesday, as I leaf for Queen's Crawley to-morrow morning erh/. 
" Great Gaunt Street." 

Eebecca had never seen a Baronet, as far as she knew, and as soon as 
she had taken leave of Amelia, and counted the gniaeas which g4»od- 
natured Mr. Sedley had put into a purse for her, and as soon as she had done 
wiping her eyes with her handkerchief (which operation she concluded the 
very moment the carriage had turned the comer of the street), she began 
to depict in her own mind what a baronet must be. " I wonder, does he. 
wear a star ? " thought she, " or is it only lords that wear stars ? Bat 
he will be very handsomely dressed in a court suit, with ntflSes and his 
hair a little powdered, like Mr. Wroughton at Covent Garden. I sup- 
pose he will be awfuUy proud, and that I shall be treated most contemptu- 
ously. Still I must bear my hard lot as well as I can — at least, I 
shall be amongst gentlefolks^ and not with vulgar city people :" and she 
fell to thinking of her Eussell Square friends with that very same philo- 
sophical bitterness with which, in a certain apologue, the fox is represented 
as speaking of the grapes. 

Having passed through Shiverly Square into Great Gaunt Street, the 
carriage at length stopped at a taU gloomy house between two other tail 
gloomy houses, each with a hatchment over the middle drawing-room 
window; as is the custom of houses in Great Gaunt Street, in whidi gloomy 
locality death seems to reign perpetual. The shutters of the first floor 
windows of Sir Pitt's mansion were closed — those of the dinii^-room were 
partially open, and the blinds neatly covered up in old newsps^era* 

^Scy/^oorr y^^a/6^j 


^^//^^ yfj i^?yfy fiA^W /'^//^'y^ 


John, the groom, who had drive& the carnage alone, did not care to 
descend to ring the bell ; and so prayed a passing miJ^-boy to perform 
that office for him. When the bell was rung, a head appeared between 
the interstices of the dining-room shutters, and the door was opened by a 
man in drab breeches and gaiters, with a dirty old coat, a foul old neck- 
cloth lashed round his bristly neck, a shining bald head, a leering red face, 
a pair of twinkling grey eyes, and a mouth perpetually on the grin, 

" This Sir Pitt Crawley's ? " says John, from the box. 

" Ees," says the man at the door, with a nod. 

" Hand down these 'ere trunks then," said John. 

" Hand 'n down yourself," said the porter. 

" Don't you see I can't leave my bosses ? Come, bear a hand, my fine 
feller, and Miss will give you some beer," said John, with a horse-laugh, 
for he was no longer respectful to Miss Sharp, as her connexion with the 
family was broken g€, and as she had giiwn nothing to the servants on 
coming away. 

The bald-headed man, taking Ids hands mA of his breeches pockets, 
advanced on this summons, and throwmg XBbs Sharp'« trunk over his 
shoulder, carried it into the hoisM. 

" Take this basket and shawl, if you please, and open the door," said 
Miss Sharp, and descended from the carnage in much indignation. " I 
shall write to Mr. Sedley and inform him of your conduct/' said she to 
the groom. 

" Don't," replied that functionary. *'Ihope youVe forgot nothink? 
Miss 'MeHa's gownds — ^have you got them — as the lady's-maid was to 
have 'ad ? I hope they '11 fit you. Bhat the door, Jim, you '11 get no good 
out of 'er" continued John, pointing with his tlmmb towards Miss Sharp : 
" a bad lot, I tell you, a bad lot," and so saying, Mr. Sedley's groom drove 
away. The truth is, he was attached to the lady's-maid in question, and 
indignant that she should have been robbed of her perquisites. 

On entering the dining-room, by the orders of the individual in gaiters, 
Rebecca found that apartment not more cheerfid than such rooms usually 
are, when gented faooailies are out of town. Hie faithful chambexs see'm, 
as it were, to mourn the absence of their masters. The turkey carpet has 
rolled itsdf up, and retired sulkily under the sideboard: the pictuces 
have hidden their faces behind old sheets of brown pap» : the ceiling lamp 
is muffled up in a dismal sack of brown liolland: the window-curtains have 
disappeared under all sorts of shabby envelopes : the marble bust of Est 
Wa4)ole Crawley is looking from its black corner at the bare boards and 
the oiled fire-irons, and the empty card-racks over the mantel-pieoe : the 
cellaret hUs lurked away behind the carpet : the diairs ace turned up heads 
and tails along the walk : and in the d^k comer opposite the statue, is an 
old-fashioned crabbed knife-box, locked and sitting on a dumb w^ter. 

Two kitchen chairs, and a round table, and an attenuated old poker and 
tongs were, however, gathered round the fire-place, as was a saucepan over 
a feeble sputtering fire. There was a bit of cheese and bread, and a tin 
candlestick on the table, add a little black porter in a pint-poL 

/'Had your dinner? I suppose. Itisnottoo warmforyouP Like b 
drop of beer?" 



" Where is Sir Pitt Crawley ? '* said Miss Sharp majestically. 

" He, he ! /be Sir Pitt Crawley. Eeklect you owe me a pint for 
bringing down your luggage. He, he ! Ask Tinker if I baynt. Mrs. 
Tinker, Miss Sharp ; Miss Governess, Mrs. Charwoman. Ho, ho ! " 

The lady addressed as Mrs. Tinker, at this moment made her appear- 
ance with a pipe and a paper of tobacco, for which she had been despatched 
a minute before Miss Sharp's arrival ; and she handed the articles over to 
Sir Pitt, who had taken his seat by the fire. 

" Where 's the farden ? ' ' said he. "I gave you three halfyence. Where 's- 
the change? old Tinker." 

" There I " replied Mrs. Tinker, flinging down the coin ; " it 's only 
baronets as cares about farthings." 

" A farthing a day is seven shillings a year," answered the M.P. ; 
" seven shillings a year is the interest of seven guineas. Take care of your 
farthings, old Tinker, and your guineas will come quite nat'ral." 

"You maybe sure it's Sir Pitt Crawley, young woman," said Mrs. 
Crawley, surfily ; " because he looks to his farthings. You'll knaw him 
better afore long." 

" And like me none the worse, Miss Sharp," said the old gentleman, 
with an air almost of polit^ess. " I must be just before I'm generous." 

" He never gave away a farthing in his Itfe," growled Tinker. 


" Never, and never will : it's against my principle. Go and get another 
chair from the kitchen, Tinker, if you want to sit down; and then we'll 
have a bit of supper." 

Presently the baronet plunged a fork into the saucepan on the fire, and 
withdrew from the pot a piece of tripe and an onion, which he divided into 
pretty equal portions, and of which he partook with Mrs. Tinker, ** You 
see. Miss Sharp, when I'm not here Tinker's on board wages : when 
I'm in town she dines with the family. Hawl haw 1 I'm glad Miss 
Sharp's not hungry, ain't you, Tink ? " And they fell to upon their frugal 

After supper Sir Pitt Crawley began to smoke his pipe ; and when it 
became quite dark, he lighted the rushlight in the tin candlestick, and pro- 
ducing from an interminable pocket a huge mass of papers, began reading 
them, and putting them in order. 

" I 'm here on. law business, my dear, and that 's how it happens that I 
shall have the pleasure of such a pretty travelling companion to-morrow." 

" He 's always at law business," said Mrs. Tinker, taking up the pot of 

" Drink and drink about," said the Baronet. " Yes, my dear, Tmker is 
quite right: I 've lost and won more lawsuits than any man in England. 
Look here at Crawley, Bart. v. Snaffle. I 'U throw him over, or my name's 
not Pitt Crawley. Podder and another versus Crawley, Bart. Overseers 
of Snaily parish against Crawley, Bart. They can 't prove it 's common : 
I '11 defy 'em ; the land 's mine. It no more belongs to the parish than 
it does to you or Tinker here. I 'U beat 'em, if it cost me a thousand 
guineas. Look over the papers ; you may if you like, my dear. Do you 
write a good hand ? I 'U make you useful when we 're at Queen's Crawley, 
depend on it Miss Sharp. Now the dowager 's dead I want some one." 

" She was as bad as he," said Tinker. " She took .the law of every one of 
her tradesmen ; and turned away forty-eight footmen in four year." 

" She was dose — very dose," said the orphan, simply ; " but she was a 
valyble woman to me, and saved me a steward." — ^And in this confidential 
strain, and much to the amusement of the new-comer, the conversation 
continued for a considerable time. Whatever Sir Pitt Crawley's qualities 
might be, good or bad, he did not make the least disguise of them. He 
talked of himself incessantly, sometimes in the coarsest and vulgarest 
Hampshire accent ; sometimes adopting the tone of a man of the world. • 
And so, with injunctions to Miss Sharp to be ready at five in the morning, 
he bade her good night. " You '11 sleep with Tinker to-night," he said ; 
" It 's a big bed, and there 's room for two. Lady Crawley died in it. 
Good night." 

Sir Pitt went off after this benediction, and the solemn Tinker, rushlight 
in hand, led the way up the great bleak stone stairs, past the great dreary 
drawing-room doors, with the handles muffled up in paper, into the great 
front bed-room, wheie Lady Crawley had slept her last. The bed and 
chamber were so funereal and gloomy, you might have fancied, not only 
that Lady Crawley died in the room, but that her ghost inhabited it. 
Bebecca sprang about tiie apartment, however, with the greatest liveliness, 
And had peeped into the huge wardrobes, and the closets, and the cupboards. 

YAJsrarf fair. 

and tried the drawers^wMchwere locked, and exammed tite chreary pictures 
and toilefete appointments, while the old eharwoman was saying^her prayers. 
" I shouldn't like to sleep in this yeer bed without a good oonseience. 
Miss/' said the old woman. " There 's room for us and a half-dozen of 
ghosts in it," says Eehecca. " Tell me all about Lady fcrawley and Sir 
Pitt Crawley, and everybody, my dear Mjs. Tinker/' 

But old Tinker was not to be pumped bythisKttle cross-questioner ; «nd 
signifying to her that bed was a place for sleeping, not conversaition, set up 
in her comer of the bed such a- snore as only the noise of innocence can 
produce. Eebecca lay awake for a long, long time, thinking of the morrow^ 
and of the new world into which she was going, and of her chances of 
success there. The rushlight flickered in tibe basin. The mantel-piece 
cast up a great black shadow, over half of a mouldy old sampler, which her 
defunct ladyship had worked, no doubt, and over two Kttle family pictures 
of young lads, one in a college gown, and iiie other in a red jacket like a 
soldier. When she went to sleep, Eebecca chose that one to dream about. 

At four o'clock, on such a roseate summer's morning as even made 
Oreat Gaunt Street look- cheerful, the faithM Tinker, having wakened her 
bedfellow, and bid her prepare for departure, unbarred and unbolted the 
great hall door, (the clanging and clapping whereof startled the sleeping 
echoes in the street), and tafing her way into Oxford Street, summoned a 
coach from a stand there. It is needless to particularize the nmnber of 
the vehidci or to state that the. driver was stationed thus early in the 
neighbourhood of Swallow Street, in hopes .that some young buck, reeling 
homeward from the tavern, might need the aid of his vehicle, and pay him 
with the generosity of intoxication. 

It is likewise needless to say, that the driver, if he had any such hopes 
as those above stated, was grossly disappointed; and that the worthy 
Baronet. whom he drove to the City did not give him one single penny 
more than his fare. It was in vain that Jehu appealed and stormed ; that 
he flung down Miss Sharp's bandboxes in the gutter at the 'Necks, and 
swore he would take the law of his fare. 

" You 'd better not," said one of the ostlers ; " it 's Sir Pitt Crawley." 

" So it is, Joe," cried the Baronet, approvingly; " and I 'd like to see 
the man can do me." 

'* So should oi," said Joe, grinning sulkily, and mounting the baronet's 
baggage on the roof of the coach, 

" Keep the box for me, Leader," exclaims the Member of Parliament to 
the coachman; who replied,,"Yes, Sir Pitt," with, a touch of his hat, and 
rage in his soul, (for he had promised the box to a young gentleman from 
Cambridge, who would have given a crown to a certainty), and Miss Sharp 
was accommodated with a back seat inside tiie carriage, which may be said 
to be carrying her into the wide worid. 

How the young man from Cambridge sulkily put his five great coats in 
front ; but was reconciled when little Miss Sharp was made to quit the 
carriage, and mount up beside him — ^when he covered her up in one of his 
Benjamins, and became perfectly good-humoured — how the asthmatic 
gentleman, the prim lady, who declared upon her sacred honour she had 



never travelled in a public carriage beforci (there is always such a lady in 
a coach, — ^Alas 1 was ; for the coaches, where are they ?), and the fat widow 
with the brandy-bottle, took their places inside — ^how the porter asked 

them all for money, and got sixpence from the gentleman and five greasy 
halipence from the fat widow — and how the carriage at length drove away 
— now, threading the dark lanes of Aldersgate, anon clattering by the Blue 
Cupola of Paul's, ginghng rapidly by the strangers' entry of Fleet-Market, 
which, with Exeter 'Change, has now departed to the world of shadows — 
how they passed the White Bear in Piccadilly, and saw the dew rising up 
from the market-gardens of Knightsbridge — ^howTumham-green, Brentford, 
Bagshot, were passed — need not be told here. But the writer of these 
pages, who hath pursued in former days, and in the same bright weather, 
the same remarkable journey, cannot but think of it with a sweet and 
tender regret. What is the road now, and its merry incidents of life ? Is 
there no Chelsea or Greenwich for the old honest pimple-nosed coachmen ? 
I wonder where are they, those good fellows ? Is old WeUer alive or dead ? 
and the waiters, yea, and the inns at which they waited, and the cold- 
round-of-beefs inside, and the stunted ostler, with his blue nose and clinking 
pail, where is he, and where is his generation ? To those great geniuses now 
in petticoats, who shall write novels for the beloved reader's cMdren, these 



men and things will be as mncli legend and history as Nineveh, or Coeur 
de Lion, or Jack Sheppard. For them stage-coaches will have become 
romances — a team of four bays as fabulous as Bucephalus or Black Bess. 
Ah, how their coats shone, as the stable-men pulled their clothes off, and away 
they went — ah, how their tails shook, as with smoking sides at the stage's 
end they demurely walked away into the inn-yard. Alas 1 we shall never 
hear the horn sing at midnight, or see the pike-gates fly open any more. 
Whither, however, is the light four-inside Trafalgar coach carrying us ? 
Let us be set down at Queen's Crawley without further divagation, and 
see how Miss Eebecca Sharp speeds there. 



Miss Rebecca Sharjp to Miss Amelia Sedleyy Russell Square, London. 
(Free.— Pitt Crawley.) 

" My deaeest, sweetest Amelia, 

** Witli what mingled joy and sprrow do I take up the pen to write 
to my dearest frierid ! Oh, what a change between to-day. and yesterday ! 
Now I am friendless and alone ; yesterday I was at home, in the sweet 
company of a sister, whom I shall ever ever cherish ! 

" I will not tell you in what tear's and sadness I passed the fatal night 
in which I separated from you. You went on Tuesday to joy and happi- 
UCTS, with your mother and your devoted young soldier by your side ; and 
I thought of you all night, dancing at the Perkins's, the prettiest, I am 
sure, of all the young ladies at the Ball. I was brought by the groom in the 
old carriage to Sir Pitt Crawley's town house, where, after John the groom 



Iiad behaved most rudely and insolently to me (alas! 'twas safe to insult 
poverty and misfortune !), I was given over to Sir P/s care, and made to 
pass the night in an old gloomy bed, and by the side of a horrid gloomy 
old charwoman, who keeps the house. I did not sleep one single wink 
the whole night. 

" Sir Pitt is not what we silly girls, when we used to read Cecilia at 
Chiswick, imagined a baronet must have been. Anything, indeed, less 
like Lord Orville cannot be imagined. Fancy an old, stumpy, short, 
vulgar, and very dirty man, in old clothes and shabby old gaiters, who 
smokes a horrid pipe, and cooks his own horrid supper in a saucepan. 
He speaks with a country accent, and swore a great deal at the old char- 
woman, at the hackney coachman who drove us to the inn where the coach 
went from, and on which I made the journey outddefor the greater part 
of the way, 

" I was wakened at daybreak by the charwoman, and having arrived at 
the inn, was at first placed inside the coach. But, when we got to 
a place called Mudbury, where the rain began to fall very heavily — ^will 
you believe it ? — I was forced to come outside ; for Sir Pitt is a proprietor 
of the coach, and as a passenger came at Mudbury, who wanted an inside 
place, I was obliged to go outside in the rain, where, however, a young 
gentleman from Cambridge College sheltered me very kindly in one of his 
several great coats. 

" This gentleman and the guard seemed to know Sir Pitt very well, and 
laughed at him a great deal. They both agreed in calling him an old screw ; 
which means a very stingy, avaricious person. He never gives any money 
to any body, they said (and this meanness I hate) ; and the young gentle- 
man made me remark that we drove very slow for the last two stages on 
the road, because Sir Pitt was on the box, and because he is proprietor of 
the horses for this part of the journey. *But won't I flog 'em on to 
Squashmore, when I take the ribbons ?' said the young Cantab. ' And 
sarve 'em right. Master Jack,' said the guard. When I comprehended 
the meaning of this phrase, and that Master Jack intended to drive the 
rest of the way, and revenge himself on Sir Pitt's horses, of course 
I laughed too. 

" A carriage and four splendid horses, covered with armorial bearings, 
however awaited us at Leakington, four miles from Queen's Crawley, and 
we made our entrance to the baronet's park in state. There is a fine 
avenue of a mile long leading to the house, and the woman at the lodge- 
gate (over the piUars of which are a serpent and a dove, the supporters of 
the Crawley arms,) made us a number of curtsies as she flung oppn the 
old iron carved doors, which arei something like those at odious Chiswick. 

" • There 's an avenue,' said Sir Pitt, 'a mile long. There's six thousand 
pound of timber in them there trees. Do you c»ll that nothing?' He 
pronounces avenue — eventie, and nothing — nothink, so droll; and he had 
a Mr. Hodson, his hind from Leakington, into the carriage with him, and 
they talked about distraining, and selling up, and draining and subsoiling, 
and a great deal about tenants and farming — ^much more than I could 
understand. Sam Miles had been caught poaching, and Peter Bailey had 
gone to the workhouse at last, * Serve him right,' said Sir Peter ; * him 


and his fam^y lias been cheating me on that form these hundred and fifty 
years.' Some old tenant, I suppose, who could not pay his rent. Sir 
Pitt might have said * he and his family,' to be sure ; but rich baronets do 
not need to be careful about grammar, as poor governesses must be. 

'* Arwe passed, I remarked a beautiful church-spire rising above some old 
elms in the park ; and before them, in the midst of a lawn, and some 
outhouses, an bid red house with tall chimneys covered with ivy, and the 
windows shining in the sun. * Is that your church, sir ? ' I said. 

"*Yes, hang it,' (said Sir Pitt, only he used, dear, a much wickeder 
word) ; * how's Buty, Hodson ? Buty 's my brother Bute, my dear — ^my 
brother the parson. Buty and the Beast I call him, ha, ha ! ' 

" Hodson laughed too, and then looking more grave and nodding his 
head, said,*' I'm afraid he's better, Sir Pitt. He was out on his pony 
yesterday, looking at our com.' 

" * Looking after his tithes, hang 'un (only he used the- same wicked 
word). Will brandy and water never kill him ? He 's as tough as old 
whatdyecallum — old Methusalem.' 

*' Mi. Hodson laughed again. ' The young men is home from college. 
They've whopped John Scroggins till he's well nigh dead.' 

" * Whop my second keeper ! ' roared out Sir Rtt. 

** * He was on the parson's ground, sir,' replied Mr. Hodson ; and 
Sir Pitt in a fury swore that if ever he caught 'em poaching on his 
ground, he'd transport 'em, by the lord he would. However, he said, 

* I've sold the presentation of the living, Hodson ; none of that breed shall 
get it I war'nt ; ' and Mr. Hodson said he was quite right : and I have no 
doubt from this tliat the two brothers are at variance — as brothers often 
are, and sisters too. Don't you remember the two Miss Scratchley's at 
Chiswick, how they used always to fight and quarrel — and Mary Box, 
Cow she was always thumping Louisa ? 

•* Presently, seeing two little boys gathering sticks in the wood, Mr. 
Hodson jumped out of the carriage, at Sir Pitt's order, and rushed upon 
them with his whip. 'Pitch into 'em Hodson,' roared the baronet; 

* flog their little souls out, and bring 'em up to the house, the vagabonds; 
I'll commit *em as silre as my name's Pitt.' And presently we heard 
Mr. Hodson's whip clacking on the shoulders of the poor little blubber- 
ing wretches, and Sir Pitt, seeing that the malefactors were in custody, 
drove on to the hall. 

" All the servants were ready to meet us, and 

" Here, my dear, I was interrupted last night by a dreadful thumping- 
at my door: and who da you think it was? Sir Pitt Crawley in his 
night-cap and dressing-gown, such a figure! As I shrank away from 
such a visitor, he came forward and seized my candle ; * no candles after 
eleven o'clock. Miss Becky,' said he. ' Go to bed in the dark you pretty 
little hussey (that is what he called me), and unless you wish me to come 
for the candle every night, mind and be in bed at eleven.' And with this, 
he and Mr. Horrocks the butler went off laughing. You may be sure 
I shall not encourage any more of their visits. They let loose two immense 
blood-hounds at night, which all last night were yelling and howling at 



ih&moon. * I eall the dog Oorer/ aaid Sir Pitt ; * he's killed a mian that 
dog. has, and is master of a bull, and the mother I used to calLEioia; 
but >now . I calls $ her Aroarer, for she's too old to bite. Haw, haw ! ' 

''.Before the house of Qxbeen's Crawley, which is an odious old^Ssshioned 
red brick munsion, with tall chimneys and gfibles of the etyle of Queen 
Bess, there is a terrace flaidced by the £uniiy dove and serpent, aad'©n 
which the great hall door opens. And oh, my dear, the great hall I am 
sure is as big and as g^um as the great hall in the dear castle of Udolpho. 

' It has a.]arge£re-{^ce, in which we might put half Miss Pinkerton's 
school, and the^grate is big enough to roast an ox at the very least. 
Bound the room hang I don't know how many generations of Crawleys, 
: some with beards and ruffs, some with huge wigs and toes turned out ; 
some dressed, in long straight stays and gowns that look as st^ as 
towers, and some with long ringlets, and,, oh my dear ! scarcely any litems 
at all. At one end of the hall is' the great staircase all in black oak, as 
dismal as may be, and on either side are tall doors with stag's heads over 
them, leading to the billiard-room and the library, and the gr^t ydllow 

.•^saloon and the moriiiiig<^rooms. I think there are at least twenty bed-rooms 
on the first floor ; one of them has the bed in which Queen Elizabeth 
slept ; and I have been taken by mymew .pupils through all these fine 
apartments this moaming. They are. not /Ttadercd less:^oomy, I:prdmise 
you, by having the shutters always, shut ; and there is scarce one -of the 
apartments, but when the Hght^wns let into it, I expected to see a ghost 
in the room. We have a ^school-room on :the second floor, with-my bed- 
room leading into it on one jside, and that of the young ladies on ^e 
other. Then there are, Mr. Pitt's apartments — Mr. Crawley, he is called — 
the eldest son, and Mx, Bawdon Orawl^'s -xooms — ^he is an officer like 

. somebody, and away with his regiment. There is no want of room I 
assure you. You might lodge all the people in Bussell Square in the 

. house, I think, and have space' to spare. ' 

" Half an hour after our arrival, the great dinner, bell was rung, and I 

• came down with my two pupils (they are very thin insignificant little 
, chits of ten and eight years old). I came down in your ai»ir muslin 
gown (about which that odious Mrs. Pinner was so rude, because you 

- .gave it me) ; for I am to be .treatedcas one of the family, except on com." 

, pany days, when ^e young kdies and I m*e to dine up-Btairs. 

"Well, the great dinner bell rang, and we all assembled in the little 
drawing-room where my'Lady Crawley sits. She is the second Lady Craw- 
ley, and mother of the young ladies. She was an ironmonger's daughter, 
aioid her marriage was thought a great match. She looks as .if she had 
been handsome once, and her eyes are always weeping for the loss of her 
beauty. She is pale and meagre and bi^-shouldered ; and has not a 
word to say for herself, evidently. Her step-son, Mr. C*rawley, was like- 
wise in the room. He was in fiiU dress, as pompous as an undertaker. 
He is pale, thin, ugly, silent ; he has thin legs, no chest, hay-eoburcd 
whiskers, and straw-coloured hair. He is the very picture of h& sainted 
motiier over the mantel-^piece — Griselda of the noble house of Binkie. 

** * This is the new governess,' Mr. Crawley, said Lady Crawley, coming 
forward and taking my hand ; * Miss Sharp.* 



" < O i ' said Mr. Crawley, and pushed hk head once forward and 
began again to read a great pamphlet with which he was busy. 

" ' I hope yon will be kind. to my giii,' said Lady Crawley ; * with her 
pink eyea always full of tears.' 

" ' Law Ma, of course she will/ said the eldest : ' and I saw at a 
glance thai. I need not be afraid of that woman.' 

" * My Lady is served/ says the Butler, in black, in an immense white 
sMrt-lrill, that looked as if it had been one of the Queen Elizabeth ruffs 
depicted in the hall ; and so taking Mr. Crawl^'s arm, she led the way to 
thp dining-room, whither I followed with my little pupils in each hand. 

** Sir Pitt was already in the room with a silver jug. He had just been 
tathe cellar, and was in full dress too ; that is, he had taken his gaiters 
off, and showed his little dumpy legs in black worsted stockings. The 
. side-board was covered with glistening old plate — old cups, both gold and 
silver ; old salvers and cruet stands, lik^ Eundell and Bridge's shop. 
Everything on the table was in silver too, and two footmen, with red hair 
and canary-coloured liveries, stood on either side of the ade-board. 

" Mr. Crawley said a long grace, and Sir Pitt said amen, and the great 
silver dish-covers were removed. 

" * What have we for dhmer, Betsy ? ' said the Baronet. 

" * Mutton broth, I. believe. Sir Pitt,' answered Lady Crawley. 


^' ' Mouton aux wtveis,^ added the Butler gravely, (pronounce, if you please, 
moutongonav?7y) ; * and the soup is potage de mouton d VJScosaaise, The 
side dishes contain j9omi»«« de terre au naturel, and choufleur a Veau.^ 

" * Mutton's mutton,' said the Baronet, * and a devilish good thing. 
What Bhip was it, Horrocks, and when did you IdU ? ' 

" * One of the black-faced Scotch, Sir Pitt ; we killed on Thursday.* 

"'Who took any?' 

" * Steel, of Mudbury, took the saddle and two legs, Sir Pitt ; but he says 
the last was too young and confounded woolly, Sir Pitt.' 

" * Will you take some potage ? Miss ah — ^MissBlunt,' said Mr. Crawley. 

" ' Capital Scotch broth, my dear,' said Sir Pitt, * though they caU it 
by a Prench name.' 

" * I believe it is the custom, sir, in decent society,* said Mr. Crawley, 
haughtily, * to call the dish as I have called it ;' and it was served to us 
on silver soup-plates by the footmen in the canary coats, with the mouton 
aux naveta. Then * ale and water ' were brought, and served to us 
young ladies in wine-glasses. I am not a judge of ale, but I can say with 
a clear conscience I prefer water. 

" While we were enjoying our repast. Sir Pitt took occasion to ask what 
had become of the shoulders of the mutton ? 

" * I believe they were eaten in the servants' hall,' said my lady, humbly. 

" * They was, my lady,' said Horrocks, * and precious little else we get 
there neither.' 

" Sir Pitt burst into a hoarse laugh, and continued his conversation with 
Mr. Horrocks. * That there little black pig of the Kent sow's breed must 
be uncommon fat now.' 

" * It 's not quite busting, Sir Pitt,' said the Butler with the gravest air, 
at which Sir Pitt, and with him the young ladies, this time, began to laugh 

" * Miss Crawley, Miss Kose Crawley,' said Mr. Crawley, * your laughter 
strikes me as being exceedingly out of place.' 

** * Never mind my Lord,' said the Baronet, * we'll try the porker on 
Saturday. Kill 'un on Saturday morning, John Horrocks. Alias Sharp 
adores pork, don't you, Miss Sharp ? ' 

" And I think this is all the conversation that I remember at dinner. 
TMien the repast was concluded a jug of hot water was placed before Sir 
Pitt, with a case-bottle containing, I believe, rum. Mr. Horrocks served 
myself and my pupils with three little glasses of wine, and a bumper was 
poured out for my lady. When we retired, she took from her work- 
drawer an enormous interminable piece of knitting; the young ladies 
began to play at cribbage with a dirty pack of cards. We had but one 
candle lighted, but it was in a magnificent old silver candlestick, and after a 
very few questions from my lady, I had my choice of amusement between 
a volume of sermons, and a pamphlet on the corn-laws, which Mr. Crawley 
had been reading before dinner. 

" So we sat for an hour until steps were heard. 

" * Put away the cards, girls,' cried my lady, in a great tremor; 'put 
down Mr. Crawley's boolra. Miss Sharp : ' and these orders had been 
scarcely obeyed, when Mr. Crawley entered the room. 


" * We will resume yesterday's discourse, young ladies/ said he, * and 
you shall eaoh read a page by turns ; so that Miss a — ^Miss Short may 
have an opportunity of hearing you ; ' and the poor girls began to spell a 
long dismal sermon delivered at Bethesda Chapel, Liverpool, in behalf of 
the mission for the Chickasaw Indians. Was it not a charming evening ? 

'' At ten the servants were told to call Sir Pitt and the household to 
prayers. Sir Pitt came in first, very much flushed, and rather unsteady in 
bis gait ; and after him the butler, the canaries, Mr. Crawley's man, three 
other men, smelling very much of the stable, and four women, one of whom, 
I remarked, was very much over-dressed, and who flung me a look of great 
scorn as she plumped down on her knees. 

After Mr. Crawley had done haranguing and erpounding, we received 
our candles, and then we went to bed; and then I was disturbed in my 
writing, as I have described to my dearest sweetest Amelia. 

** * Glood night. A thousand thousand thousand kisses 1 ' " 

" Saturday, — ^This morning, at five, I heard the shrieking of the little 
black pig. Bose and Yiolet introduced me to it* yesterday ; and to the 
stables, and to the kennel, and to the gardener, who was picking fruit to 
send to market, and from whom they begged hard a bunch of hot-house 
grapes ; but he said that Sir Pitt had numbered every " Man Jack" of 
them, and it would be as much as his place was worth to give any away. 
The darling girls caught a colt in a paddock, and asked me if I would ride, 
and began to ride themselves, when the groom, coming with horrid oaths, 
^rove them away. 

• " Lady Crawley is always knitting the worsted. Sir Pitt is always tipsy, 
every night ; and, I believe, sits with Horrocks, the butler. Mr. Crawley 
always reads sermons in the evening ; and in the morning is locked up in 
his study, or else rides to Mudbury, on county business, or to Squashmore, 
where he preaches, on Wednesdays and Fridays, to the tenants there. 

" A hundred thousand grateful loves to your dear papa and mamma. Is 
your poor brother recovered of his rack-punch ? Oh, dear ! Oh, dear ! 
How men should beware of wicked punch ! 

" Ever and ever thine own, 

" Bebecca.** 

Everything considered, I think it is quite as well for our dear Amelia 
Sedley, in Kussell Square, that Miss Sharp and she are parted. Eebecca 
is a droll funny creature, to be sure : and those descriptions of the poor 
lady weeping for the loss of her beauty, and the gentleman " with hay- 
coloured whiskers and straw-coloured hair," are very smart, doubtless, and 
show a great knowledge of the world. That she might, when on her 
knees, have been thii3cing of something better than Miss Horrocks's 
ribbons, has possibly struck both of us. But my kind reader will please 
to remember that these histories in their gaudy yellow covers have 
" Vanity Fair " for a title, and that Vanity Fair is a very vain, wicked, 
foolish place, full of all sorts of humbugs and falsenesses and pretensions. 
And while the moralist, who is holding forth on the cover (an accurate 
portrait of your humble servant), professes to wear neither gown nor 


bands, but only the very same losg-eared livery in wfaicb his congregation 
ia arrayed : yet, look yon, one is bound to speak the truth as far as one 
knows it, whether one mounts a cap and beUs or a shovel^hat ; and a 
deal of disagreeable matter must oome out in the coarse of such an under- 

. I have heard a brother of the story-telling trade, at Naples, preaching 
to a pack of good-for-nothing honest lazy fellows by the sea-shore, work 
himself up into such a rage and passion with some of the villains whose 
wicked deeds he was describing and inventing, that the audience could not 
resist it ; and they and the poet together would burst out into a roar of 
oaths and execrations against the fictitious monster of the tale, so that the : 
hat went round, and the bajocchi tumbled into it, in the midst of a perfiect 
storm of sympathy. 

At the Httle Paris theatres, on the other hand, you will not only bear , 
the people yelling out " Ah gredin ! Ah mondre 1 " and cursing the tyrant 
of the play from the boxes ; but the actors themselves positively refuse to 
play the wicked parts, such as those of infdmes Anglais, brutal Cossacks, and 
what not, and prefer to appear at a smaller salary, in their real characters as 
loyal Frenchmen. I set the two stories one against the other, so that you : 
may see that it is not from mere mercenary motives that the present 
performer is desirous to show up and trounce his villains ; but because he 
has a sincere hatred of them, which he cannot keep down, and which must 
find a vent in suitable abuse and bad language. 

I warn my "kyind friends," then, that I am going to tell a. story of harrow- . 
iijg villany and complicated — but, as I trust, intensely interesting — crime. 
My rascals are no milk-and-water rascals, I promise you. When we come 
to the proper places we won't spare fine language — ^No, no ! But when . 
we are going over the quiet country we must perforce be calm. A 
tempest in a slop-basin is absurd. We will reserve that sort of thing for / 
the mighty ocean and the lonely midnight. The present Number will be 
very Kuld. . Others ^But we wiU not anticipate those. 

And, as we bring our characters forward, I will ask leave, as a man and . 
a brother, not only to introduce them, but occasionally to step down firom 
the 'platform, and talk about them : if they are good and kindly, to love 
them and shake them by the hand ; if they are siUy, to laugh at them 
confidentially in the reader's sleeve : if they are wicked and heartless, to 
abuse them in the strongest terms which politeness admits of. 

Otherwise you might fancy it was I who was sneering at the practice of ' 
devotion, whidi Mis* Sharp finds so ridiculous ; that it was I who laughed 
good humouredly at the reeling old Silenus of a baronet^ — whereas the 
laughter comes from one who has no rev«*enoe except for prosperity, and 
no eye for anything beyond success. Such people there are living and 
flourishing in the world— ^Faithless, Hopeless, Charityless : let us have at 
them, dear friends, with might and main. Some there are, and very suc- 
cessfiil too, mere quacks and fools : and it was to combat and expose such 
as those, no doubt, that Laughter was made. 

< f r u.. '. -'^fJ 

- ^-^ 



Tit Pitt Cbawley was a philosopher with a taste 
for what is calkd low life^ His first inar-< 
riage with the daughter of the noble Biukie 
had been made under the audioes of his 
parents ; and as he often told Lady Crawley 
in her life*time she was such a confounded 
quarrelsome high-bred jade that when she died 
he was hanged if he would ever take another 
of her sort at her ladyship's demise, he kept 
his promise, and selected for a second wife 
Miss Eose Dawson, daughter of Mr. John 
~ Thomas Dawson, ironmonger, of Mudbmy. 
What a happy woman was Kose to be my 
Lady Crawley ! 

Let us set down the items of her happiness. In the first place, she 
gave up Peter Butt, a young man who kept company with her, and in 
consequence of his disappointment in love, took to smuggling, poaching, 
and a thousand other bad courses. Then she quarrelled, as in duty bound, 
with all the friends and intimates of her youth, who, of course, could not 
be received by my Lady at Queai's Crawley — ^nor did she find in her new 
rank and abode any persons who were willing to welcome her. Who ever 
did ? Sir Huddleston Fuddleston had three daughters who all hoped to 
be Lady Crawley. Sir Giles Wapshot's family were insulted that one of 
the Wapshot girls had not the preference in the marriage, and the remain- 
ing baronets of the county were indignant at their comrade's misalliance- 
Never mind: the cwnmoners, whom we will leave to grumble anonymously. 
Sir Pitt did not care, as he said, a brass farden for any one of them. 
He had his pretty Eose, and what more need a man require than to please 
himself? So he used to get drunk every night : to beat his pretty Rose 
sometimes : to leave her in Hampshire when he went to London for the 
padiamentary session, without a single friend in the wide wcH'ld. Even 
Mrs. Bute Crawlej^ the rector's wife, refused to visit hw, as she said she 
would never give the fOB to a tradesman's daughter. 
. As the only endowments with which Nature had gifted Lady Crawley 
were: those of pink cheeks and a white skin, and as she had no sort of 
character, nor talents, nor opinions, nor occupations, nor amusem^its, nor 
that vigour of soul and ferocity of temper which often fails to the lot of 
entirely foolish women, her hold upon Sir Pitt's affections was not very 
great. Her roses faded out of her cheeks, and the pretty freshness left 
h^r fignre after the birth of a couple of children, and she became a mere 


machine in her husband's house, of no more use than the late Lady 
Crawley's grand piano. Being a light-complexioned woman, she wore 
light clothes, as most blondes will, and appeared, in preference, in draggled 
sea-green, or slatternly sky-blue. She worked that worsted day and night, 
or other pieces like it. She had counterpanes in the course of a few years 
to all the beds in Crawley. She had a small flower-garden, for which she had 
rather an affection ; but beyond this no other like or disliking. When her 
husband was rude to her she was apathetic : whenever he* struck her she 
cried. She had not character enough to take to drinking, and moaned 
about slip-shod and in curl-papers all day. O, Vanity Fair — ^Vanity Fair! 
This might have been, but for you, a cheery lass : — ^Peter Butt and Bose a 
happy man and wife, in a snug farm, with a hearty family ; and an honest 
portion of pleasures, cares, hopes, and struggles. But a title and a coach 
and four are toys more precious than happiness in Vanity Fair : and if 
Harry the Eighth or Bluebeard were alive now, and wanted a tenth wife, 
do you suppose he could not get the prettiest girl that shall be presented 
this season ? 

The languid dullness of their mamma did not, as it may be supposed, 
awaken much affection in her little daughters, but they were very happy in 
the servants* hall and in the stables ; and the Scotch gardener having luckily 
a good wife and some good children, they got a little wholesome society 
and instruction in his lodge, which was the only education bestowed upon 
them until Miss Sharp came. 

Her engagement was owing to the remonstrances of Mr. Pitt Crawley, 
the only friend or protector Lady Crawley ever had, and the only person, 
besides her children, for whom she entertained a little feeble attachment. 
Mr. Pitt took after the noble Binkies, from whom he was descended, and 
was a very polite and proper gentleman. When he grew to man's estate, 
and came back from Christchurch, he began to reform the slackened disd- • 
pline of the hall, in spite of his father, who stood in awe of him. He was 
a man of such rigid refinement, that he would have starved rather than 
have dined without a white neck-cloth. Once, when just from college, and 
when Horrocks the butler brought him a letter without placing it previ- 
ously on a tray, he gave that domestic a look, and administered to him a 
speech so cutting, that Horrocks ever after trembled before him : the whole 
household bowed to him: Lady Crawley's curl-papers came off earlier 
when he was at home : Sir Pitt's muddy gaiters disappeared ; and if that 
incorrigible old man still adhered to other old habits, he never fuddled 
himself with rum and water in his son's presence, and only talked to his 
servants in a very reserved and polite manner ; and those persons remarked 
that Sir Pitt never swore at Lady Crawley while his son was in the room. 

It was he who taught the butler to say " My lady is served," and who 
insisted on handing her ladyship into dinner. He seldom spoke to her, 
but when he did it was with the most powerful respect ; and he never let 
her quit the apartment, without rising in the most stately manner to open 
the door, and making an elegant bow at her egress. 

At Eton he was called Miss Crawley ; and there, I am sorry to say, his 
younger brother Eawdon used to lick him violently. But though his parts 
were not brilliant, he made up for his lack of talent by meritorious industry, 


and was neyer known, during eight years at school, to be subject to that 
punishment, which it is generally thought none but a cherub can escape. 

At college his career was of course highly creditable. And here he pre- 
pared himself for public Kfe, into which he was to be introduced by the patron- 
age of his grandfather, Lord Binkie, by studying the ancient and modem 
orators with great assiduity, and by speaking unceasingly at the debating 
societies. But though he had a fine flux of words, and delivered his little 
voice with great pomposity and pleasure to himself, and never advanced 
any sentiment or opimon which was not perfectly trite and stale, and sup- 
ported by a Latin quotation ; yet he failed somehow, in spite of a medi- 
ocrity which ought to have insured any man a success. He did not even 
get the prize poem, which all his friends said he was sure of. 

After leaving college he became Private Secretary to Lord Binkie, and 
was then appointed Attach^ to the Legation at Pumpernickel, which post 
he filled with perfect honour, and brought home despatches, consisting of 
Strasburg pie, to the Foreign Minister of the day. After remaining ten 
years Attach^ (several years after the lamented Lord Binkie*s demise), and 
finding the advancement slow, he at length gave up the diplomatic service 
in some disgust, and began to turn country gentleman. 

He wrote a pamphlet oij Malt on returning to England (for he was 
an ambitious man, and always liked to be before the public), and took a 
strong part in the Negro Emancipation question. Then he became a 
friend of Mr. Wilberforce's, whose politics he admired, and had that 
famous correspondence with the Eeverend Silas Homblower, on the 
Ashantee Mission. He was in London, if not for the Parliament session, 
at least in May, for the religious meetings. In the country he was a 
magistrate, and an active visitor and speaker among those destitute 
of religious instruction. He was said to be paying his addresses to Lady 
Jane Sheepshanks, Lord Muttondown's third daughter, and whose sister. 
Lady Emily, wrote those sweet tracts, " The Sailor's True Binnacle," and 
** The Applewoman of Knchley Common." 

Miss Sharp's account of his employment at Queen's Crawley were not 
caricatures. He subjected the servants there to the devotional exercises 
before mentioned, in which (and so much the better)^he brought his father 
to join. He patronised an Lidependent meeting-house in^rawley parish, 
much to the indignation of his uncle the rector, and to the consequent 
delight of Sir Pitt, who was induced to go himself once or twice, which 
occasioned some violent sermons at Crawley parish church, directed point- 
blank at the Baronet's old gothic pew there. Honest Sir Pitt, however, 
did not feel the force of these discourses, as he always took his nap during 

Mr. Crawley was very earnest, for the good of the nation and of the 
Christian world, that the old gentleman should yield him up his place in 
Parliament ; but this the elder constantly refused to do. Both were of 
course too prudent to give up the fifteen hundred a year which was 
brought in by the second seat (at this period filled by Mr. Quadroon, 
with carte-blanche on the Slave question); indeed the family estate was 
much embarrassed, and the income drawn from the borough was of great 
use to the house of Queen's Crawley, 

76 ; . VANITY FAIR. 

It had never recovered the heavy fine imposed upom Wdpole Crawiey, 
first baronet, for peculation in the Tape and Sealing Was Office. Sir 
Walpole was a jolly fellow, eager to mze and to spend money ("alieni 
appetens, sol profosos," as Mr. Crawley would remark mth^), and in 
hi« day beloved by all the county for the constant drunkenness and hospi- 
tality which was maintained at Queen's Crawley. The cellars were filled 
with burgundy then, the kennels with hounds, and the stables with gallant 
hunters ; now, such horses as Queen's Crawley ppssessed went to plough, 
or ran in the Trafalgar Coach; and it was with a team of these very 
horses, on an ofF-day, that Miss Sharp was brought to the HaU ; for, boor 
as he was, Sir Pitt was a stickler for his dignity while at home, and seldom 
drove out but with four horses, and, though he dined off boiled mutton, 
had always three footmen to serve it. 

If mere parsimony would have made a man rich, Sir Pitt Crawley might 
have become very wealthy — ^if he had been an attorney in a country town, 
with no capital but his brains, it is very possible that he would have - 
turned them to good account, and might have achieved for himself a very 
considerable influeiMje and competency. But he was unluckily endowed 
with a good name and a large though encumbered estate, both of which 
went rather to injure than to advance him. He had a taste for law, 
which cost him many thousands yearly ; and being a great deal too clever 
to be robbed, as he said, by any single agent, aUowed his affairs to 
be mismanaged by a dozen, whom he aU equally mistrusted. He was 
such a sharp landlord, that he could hardly find any but bankrupt 
tenants ; and such a close farmer, as to grudge almost the seed to the 
ground, whereupon revengeful Nature grudged him the crops which, she 
granted to more liberal husbandmen. He speculated in every possible 
way ; he worked mines ; bought canal-shares ; horsed coaches ; too^ 
government contracts, and was the busiest man and magistrate of his 
county. As he would not pay honest agents at his granite-quarry, he had 
the satisfaction of finding that four overseers ran away, and took fortunes 
with them to America. For want of proper precautions, his coal-mines 
filled with water : the government flung his contract of damaged beef upon 
his hands : and for his coach-horses, every mail proprietor in the kingdom 
knew that. he losft more horses than any man in the country, from under- 
feeding and buying cheap. In disposition he was sociable, and far from 
being proud; nay, he rather preferred the society of a farmer or a horse- 
dealer to tliat of a gentleman, like my Lend, his son: he was fond 
of drink, of swearing, of joking with the farmers' daughters : he was never 
known to give away a shilling or to do a good action, but was of a 
pleasant, sly, laughing mood, and would cut his joke and drink his* glass 
with a tenant and sell him up the next day ; or have his laugh with the 
poacher he was transporting with equal good humour. His politeness for 
the fair sex has already been hinted at by Miss Eebecca Sharp — ^in a word, 
the whole baronetage, peerage, commonage of England, *did not contain a 
more cunning, mean, selfish, foolish, disreputable old man. That blood- 
red hand of Sir Pitt Crawley's would be in anybody's pocket except his 
own ; and it is with grief and pain, that, as' admirers of the British 
aristocracy, we find ourselves obliged tp admit the existence of so many ill 
qualities in a person whose name is in Debrett. 


One great cirase ^y Mr. Crafwley had sucli a hold over the affections 
of his fiilher, resulted froAi money anrgngements. The Baronet owed his 
son a sran of money out of the jointure of his mother, which he did not 
find it convenient. to pay; indeed he had an ftoost invincible repugnance 
to paymg anybody, and could only be brought by force to discharge his 
debts. Miss Sharp calculated (for she became, as we shall hear speedily, 
inducted into most of the seei-ets of the family) that the mere payment of 
his creditors cost the honourable baronet several hundreds yearly; but 
this was ft delight he covdd not f<»-ego ; he had a savage pleasure in making 
the poor wretches wait, and in shifting from 'cemrt to court and from term 
to term the period of satisfaclion. What's the good of being in Parliament, 
he said, if you must pay your debts ? Hence, indeed, his position as a 
senator was not a little useful to him. 

Vanity Fair — ^Vanity Fair ! Here was a man, who could not spell, and 
did not care to read — ^who had the habits and the cunning of a boor : whose 
aim in life was pettifogging : who never had a taste, or emotion, or enjoy- 
ment, but what was sordid and foul ; and yet he had rank, and honours, 
and power, somehow : and was a dignitary of the land, and a pillar of the 
state. He was high sheriff, and rode in a golden coach. Great ministers 
and statesmen courted him ; and in Vanity Fair he had a higher place than 
the most brilliant genius or spotless vii-tue. 

Sir Pitt had an unmarried half-sister who inherited her mother's large for- 
tune, and though the Baronet proposed to borrow this money of her on mort- 
gage. Miss Crawley declined the offer, and preferred the security of the funds. 
She had signified, however, her intention of leaving her fortune equally 
between Sir Pitt's second son and the family at the rectory, and had once 
or twice paid the debts of Bawdon Crawley in his career at college and 
ilk the army. Miss Crawley was, in consequence, an object of great respect 
when she came to Queen's Crawley, for she had a balance at her banker's 
which would have made her beloved anywhere. 

What a dignity it gives an old lady, that balance at the banker's ! How 
tenderly we look at her faults if she is a relative (and may every reader 
have a score of such), what e kind good-natured old creature we find her! 
How the junior partner ol Hobbs and Dobbs leads her smiling tp the 
carriage with the lozenge upon it, and the fat wheezy coachman ! How, 
when she comes to pay us a visit, we generally find an opportunity to let 
our friends know her station in the world ! We say (and with perfect 
truth) I wish I had Miss MacWhirter's signature to a cheque for five 
thousand pounds. She wouldn't miss it, says your wife. She is my aunt, 
say you, in an easy careless way, when your friend asks if Miss MacWhirter 
is any relative ? Your wife is perpetually sending her little testimonies of 
affection, your little girls work endless worsted baskets, cushions, and foot- 
stools for her. What a good fire there is in her room when she comes to 
pay you a visit, although your wife laces her stays without one ! The 
house during her stay assumes a festive, neat, warm, jovial, snug appearance 
not visible at other seasons. You yourself, dear sir, forget to go to sleep 
after dinner, and find yourself all of a sudden (though you invariably lose) 
very fond of a rubber. What good dinners you have — ^game every day. 



Malmsey -Madeira, and no end of fish from London. Even the servants 
in the kitchen share in the general prosperity ;, and, somehow, 4^ng the 
stay of Miss MacWhirter's fat coachman, the beer is grown much stronger, 
and the consumption of tea and sugar in the nursery (where her maid takes 
her meals) is not regarded in the least. Is it so, or is it not so ? I appeal 
to the middle classes. Ah, gracious powers I I wish you would send me an 
old aunt — ^a maiden aunt — ^an aunt with a lozenge on her carriage, and a 
front of light coffee-coloured hair — ^how my children should work work- 
bags for her, and my Julia and I would make her comfortable ! Sweet — 
sweet vision ! Foolish— foolish dream ! 



ND now^ being received as a member of tlie amiable 
family whose portraits we hare sketcbed in the fore« 
going pages, it became naturally Bebecca's duty to 
make herself, as she said, agreeable to her benefac- 
tors, and to gain their confidence to the utmost of 
her power. Who can but admire this quality of 
gratitude in an unprotected orphan ; and, if there 
entered some degree of selfishness into her calcula- 
tions, who can say but that her prudence was perfectly 
justifiable ? " I am alone in the world," said the 
friendless girl. " I have nothing to look for but 
what my own labour can bring me ; and while that 
little pink-faced chit Amelia, with not half mysense> 
has ten thousand pounds and an establishment 
secure, poor Eebecca (and my figure is far better 
I than her*s) has only herself and her own wits to 
• trust to. Well, let us see if my wits cannot provide 
me with an honourable maintenance, and if some day 
or the other I cannot show Miss Amelia my real 
superiority over her. Not that I dislike poor 
AmeHa : who can dislike such a harmless, good* 
, natured creature ? — only it will be a fine day when 
I can take my place above her in the world, as why, 
Jg indeed, should I not ? ** Thus it was that our little 
romantic friend formed visions of the future for her- 
self, — ^nor must we be scandalised, that in aU her castles in the air, a 
husband was the principal inhabitant. Of what else have young ladies 
to think, but husbands? Of what else do their dear mammas think? 
" I must be my own mamma," said Eebecca ; not without a tingling con- 
sciousness of defeat, as she thought over her little misadventure with Jos 

So she wisely determined to render her position with the Queen's 
Crawley family comfortable and secure, and to this end resolved to make 
friends of every one around her who could at all interfere with her 

As my Lady Crawley was not one of these personages, and a woman, 
moreover, so indolent and void of character as not to be of the least conse- 
quence in her own house, Eebecca soon found that it was not at all necessary 
to cultivate her good will — ^indeed, impossible to gain it. She used to talk 
to her pupils about their " poor mamma ; " and, though she treated that 


lady with every demonstration of cool respect, it was to the rest of the 
family that she wisely directed the chief part of her attentions. 

With the young people, whose applause she thoroughly gained, her 
method was pretty simple. She did not pester their young brains with too 
much learning, but, on the contrary, let them have their own way in regard 
to educating themselves ; fot what instmicti^n is more ejffectual than self- 
instruction ? The eldest was rather fond of books, and as there was in 
the old library at Q/ueen's Crawley a considerable provision of works of 
light literature of the last century, both in the French and English 
' liffigtiages (they had 'been purchased by the Secretarj^ of the Tape and 

• -Sealing Wax Office at the period of his disgrace), and as nobody ever 
tnmbled the book-sheJres but herself, Bebedcawas enabled agreeab^yi and, 
as it were, in playing, .tO' impart a great deal of instruction to Miss Eose 

'Ske imd MJss Eoee thus read together many delightM IFl^ndi and 
Sfigl»h^ works, amjong wMch may be mentioned those of the learned Dr. 

' "Smollett, of the ingenioas Mr. Henry Fielding, of the graceful and fantastic 
JildiiflkHr Orebiflon the younger, whom our immortifl poet Gray so much 
admired, and of the imiversal Monsieur de Voltaire. Once, when- Mr. 
Oawley asked what the young people were reading, the governess replied 
" eHioHett." "* Oh, SmoUett," said Mr. Crawley, quite satisfied. **His 

t history is more dull, bcit by no means so dangerous as that of Mr. Hume. 
It is Mstory you are reading ? " '* Yes," said Miss Eose ; without iiow- 
ever, adding that it was the history of Mr. Humphrey Clkkfir. On 
aiJotker occasion he was rather scandalised at iinding his aister^ with a 
book of French plays ; but as the governess remarked that it was for the 

' fmrpose of acquiring the French idiom in conversation, rheiwras fain to be 
oontent. Mr. Crawley, as a diplomatist, was exceedingly proud' of his 

'<Mm fekiU in speaking the French language, (for he was of the world stiU), 

* and not a KtUe pleased with the compliments which the governess conti- 
nually paid him upon his proficiency. 

'. Miss Violet's tastes were, on the contrary, more rude and boisterous 
than those of her sister. She knew the sequestered spots wh^re the hens 

- layed* their eggs. She could climb a tree to rob the nests of the feathered 
song^ers of their speckled spoils. And her pleasure was to ride the 
y©ang^o<!^s, and to scour the plains like Camilla. She was the favourite 
of 'h«r father and of the stable-men. She was the darling, and withal the 
terror of the cook; for she discovered the haunts of the jam-pots, and 
would attack them when they were within her reach. She and her sister 
were engaged in constant battles, Any of which peccadilloes, if Miss 
Sharp discovered, she did not tell them to Lady Crawley, who would have 
told them to the father, or, worse, to Mr. Crawley; but promised not to 
tell if Miss Violet would be a good girl and love her governess. 

With Mr. Crawley Miss Sharp was respectful and obedient, ^he used 
to consult him on passages of French which she could not imderstand, 
though her mother was a Frenchwoman, and which he woidd construe to 
her satisfaction : and, besides giving her his aid in profane literature, he 
was kind enough to select for her books of a more serious tendency, and 
address to her much of his conversation. She admired, beyond measure, 

>^y^j r. /^,ayf, /// /{^r ^ c//^rY-t^^//i:P 


his speech at the Qaasbimsboo-Aid Society ; t<K>k on interest in his 
pamphlet on malt ; was ofiTen affected, even to tears, by his ^sconrses of 
an evening, and would say — "Oh, thank you, sir," with a sigh, and a 
look up to heayen, that made him occasionally condescend to shake hands 
with her. "Blood is everything, after aU," would that aristoaratic 
religionist say. " How Miss Sharp is awakened by my words, when not 
one of the people here is touched. I am too fine for them— too delieate. 
I must familiarise my style-— but she understands it. Her mother was a 

Indeed it was from this famous family, as it appears, that Miss Shaip, 
by the mother's side, was descended. Of course lAie did not say that her 
mother had been on the stage; it would have shocked Mr. Crawley's 
religious scruples. How many noble emigrees had this horrid revolution 
plunged in povcS'ty ! She had several stories about her ancestors ere she 
had been many months in the house ; some of which Mr. Crawley hap- 
pened to find in D'Hozier's dictionary, which was in the library, and 
which strengthened his belief in their truth, and in the high-breeding of 
Rebecca. Are we to suppose from this curiosity and prying into diction- 
aries, could our heroine suppose that Mr. Crawley was interested in her ? — 
no, only in a 'friendly way. Have we not stated that he was attached to 
Lady Jane Sheepshanks ? 

He took Rebecca to task once or twice about the propriety of playing at 
backgammon with Sir Pitt, saying that it was a godless amusement; and 
that she would be much better engaged in reading " Thrump's Legacy," 
or "The Blind Washerwoman of Moorfields," or any work of a more 
serious nature ; but Miss Sharp said her dear mother used often to play 
the same game with the old Count de Trictrac and the venerable Abbe du 
Comet, and so found an excuse for this and other worldly amusement. 

But it was not only by playing at backgammon with the Baronet, that 
the little governess rendered herself agreeable to her employer. She 
found many diiferent ways of being useful to him. She read over, with 
indefatigable patience, aU those law papers, with which, before she came to 
Queen's Crawley, he had promised to entertain her. She volunteered to 
copy many of his letters, and adroitly altered the spelling of them so as 
to suit the usages of the present day. She became interested in evety- 
thing appertaining to the estate, to the farm, the park, the garden, and 
the stables ; asnd so delightful a companion was she, that the Baronet 
would seldom take his after-breakfast walk without her (and the children 
of course), when she would give her advice as to the trees which were to be 
lopped in the shrubbOTies, the garden-beds to be dug, the crops which 
were to be cut, the horses which were to go to cart or plough. Before 
she had been a year at? Queen's Crawley she had quite won the Baronet's 
confidence ; and the conversation at the dinner-table, which before used to 
be held between him and Mr. Horrocks the butler, was now almost exclu- 
sively between Sir Pitt and Miss Sharp. She was almost mistress of the 
house when Mr. Crawley was absent, but conducted herself in her new and 
exalted situ^on with such circumspection and modesty as not to offend the 
authorities of the kitchen and stable, among whom her behaviour was 
always exceedingly modest and aifable. She was' quite a diiferent person 



from the haughty, shy, dissatisfied little girl whom we have known previ- 
ously, and this change of temper proved great prfldenoe, a sincere desire of 
amendment, or at any rate great moral courage on her part. Whether it 
was the hea^ which dictated this new system of complaisance and humility 
adopted by our Eebecca, is to be proved by her after-history. A system 
of hypocrisy, which lasts through whole years, is one seldom satisfactorily 
practised by a person of one-and-twenty ; however, our readers will recol- 
lect, that, though young in years, our heroine was old in life and experience, 
and we have written to no pm-pose if they have not discovered that she 
was a very clever woman. 

The elder and younger son of the house of Crawley were, like the gentle- 
man and lady in the weather-box, never at home together — ^they hated each 
other cordially : indeed, Kawdon Crawley, the dragoon, had a great con- 
tempt for the establislunent altogether, and seldom came thither except 
when his aunt paid her annual visit. 

The great good quality of this old lady has been mentioned. She pos- 
sessed seventy thousand pounds, and had almost adopted Eawdon. She 
disliked her elder nephew exceedingly, and despised him as a milksop. 
In return he did not hesitate to state that her soul was irretrievably lost, 
and was of opinion that his brother's chance in the next world was not a 
wliit better. " She is a godless woman of the world," would Mr. Crawley 
say ; " she lives with atheists and Frenchmen. My mind shudders when I 
thii^ of her awful, awful situation, and that, near as she is to the grave, she 
should be so given up to vanity, licentiousness, profaneness, and folly." In 
fact, the old lady declined altogether Jo hear Ids hour's lecture of an even- 
ing ; and when she came to Queen's Crawley alone, he was obliged to 
pretermit his usual devotional exercises. 

" Shut up your sarmons, Pitt, when Miss Crawley comes down," said 
liis father ; " she has written to say that she won't stand the preachifying." 

" O, sir 1 consider the servants," 

" The servants be hanged," said Sir Pitt ; and his son thought even 
worse would happen were they deprived of the benefit of his instruction. 

"Why, hang it, Pitt!" said the father to his remonstrance. "You 
wouldn't be* such a flat as to let three thousand a year go out of the 
family ? " 

" What is money compared to our souls, sir?" continued Crawley. 

" You mean that the old lady won't leave the money to you ? " — ^and 
who knows but it waa Mi*. Crawley's meaning ? 

Old Miss Crawley was certainly one of the reprobate. She had a snug 
little house in Park Lane, and, as she ate and drank a great deal too much 
during the season in London, she went to Harrowgate or Cheltenham for 
the summer. She was the most hospitable and jovial of old vestals, and 
had been a beauty in her day, she said. (All old women were beauties once 
we very well know.) She was a bel esprit, and a dreadful Badical for 
those days. She had been in France (where St. Just, they say, inspired 
her with an unfortunate passion), and loved, ever after, French novels, 
French cookery, and French wines. She read Voltaire, and had Eousseau 
by heart ; talked very lightly about divorce, and most energetically of the 
rights of women. She had pictures of Mr. Fox in eveiy room in the 


house : when that statesman was in opposition, I am not sure that she 
had not flung a main with him ; and when he came into office, she took 
great credit for bringing over to him Sir Pitt and his colleague for Queen's 
€rawley, although Sir Pitt would have come over himself, without any 
trouble on the honest lady's part. It is needless to say that Sir Pitt was 
brought to change his views after the death of the great Whig statesman. 

This worthy old lady took a fancy to Eawdon Crawley when a boy, 
sent him to Cambridge (in opposition to his brother at Oxford), and, when 
the young man was requested by the authorities of the first-named Univer- 
sity to quit after a residence of two years, she bought him his conmiissions 
as Cornet and Lieutenant Crawley. 

A perfect and celebrated "blood," or dandy about town, was this 
young officer. Boxing, rat-hunting, the fives* court, and four-in-hand 
driving were then the fashion of our British aristocracy ; and he was an 
adept in all these noble sciences. And though he belonged to the house- 
hold troops, who, as it was their duty to rally round the Prince Eegent, 
had not shown their valour in foreign service yet, Eawdon Crawley had 
already {apropos of play, of which he was immoderately fond) fought tluree 
bloody duels, in which he gave ample proofs of his contempt for death. 

"And for what follows after death," would Mr. Crawley observe, 
throwing his gooseberry-coloured eyes up to the ceiling. He was always 
thinking of his brother's soul, or of the souls of those who differed with 
him in opinion : it is a sort of comfort which many of the serious give 

SiUy, romantic Miss Crawley, far from being horrified at the courage 
of her favourite, always used to pay his debts after his duels ; and would 
not listen to a word that was whispered against his morality. " He wiU 
«ow his wild-oats," she would say, "and is worth far more than that puling 
iivpocrite of a brother of his." 



£ SIDES these honest folks 
at the Hall, (whose , 
simplicity and sweet 
rural purity surely show 
the advantage of a 
country life over a 
town one ;) we must 
introduce the reader 
to their relatives and 
neighbours at the Rec- 
tory, Bute Crawley and 
his wife. 

The Eeverend Bute 
Crawley was a taU, 
stately, jolly, shovel- 
hatted man, far more 
popular in his county than the Baronet his brother. At college he pulled 
stroke-oar in the Christchurch boat, and had thrashed all the best bruisers 
of the " town." He carried his taste for boxing and athletic exerdses 
into private life : there was not a fight within twenty miles at which he 
was not present, nor a race, nor a coursing match, nor a regatta, nor 
a baU, nor an election, nor a visitation dinner, nor indeed a good dinner 
in the whole county, but he found means to attend it. You might see 
his bay-mare and gig-lamps a score of miles away from his Bectory House, 
whenever there was any dinnerparty at Fuddleston, or at Boxby, or at 
Wapshot HaU, or at the great lords of the county, with all of whom he 
was intimate. He had a fine voice ; sang " A southerly wind and a cloudy 
sky ; " and gave the " whoop " in chorus with general applause. He rode 
to hounds in a pepper-and-salt frock, and was one of the best fishermen 
in the county. 

Mrs. Crawley, the rector's wife, was a smart little body, who wrote this 
worthy divine's sermons. Being of a domestic turn, and keeping the 
house a great deal with her daughters, she ruled absolutely within the 
rectory, wisely giving her husband full liberty without. He was welcome 
to come and go, and dine abroad as many days as his fancy dictated, for 
Mi's. Crawley was a saving woman and knew the price of port wine. 
Ever since Mrs. Bute carried off the young rector of Queen's Crawley (she 
was of a good family, daughter of the late Lieut.-Colonel Hector MacTavish, 
and she and her mother played for Bute and won him at Harrogate), she 
had been a prudent and thrifty wife to* him. In spite of her cai'e, how- 
ever, he was always in debt. It took him at least ten years to pay off 


his college bills contracted during his father's life time. In the year 1 7 9 — , 
when he was just dear of these incumbrances, he gave the odds of 
100 to 1 (in twenties) against Kangaroo, who won the Derby. The 
rector was obliged to take up the money at a ruinous interest, and had 
been struggling ever since. His sister helped him with a hundred now 
and then, but of course his great hope was in her death — ^when * hang 
it ' (as he would say), * Matilda rnt^t leave me half her money.' 

So that the Baronet and his brother had every reason which two 
brothers possibly can have for being by the ears. Sir Pitt had had the 
better of Bute in innumerable family transactions. Young Pitt not only 
(lid not hunt ; but set up a meeting-house under his uncle's very nose. 
Bawdon, it was known, was to come in for the bulk of Miss Crawley's 
properly. These money transactions — ^these speculations in life and 
death — these silent battles for reversionary spoil — ^make brothers very 
loving towards each other in Vanity Fair. I, for my part, have known 
a five-pound-note to interpose and knock up a half century's attachment 
between two brethren ; and can't but admire, as I think what a fine and 
durable thing Love is among worldly people. 

It cannot be supposed that the arrival of such a personage as Eebecca 
at Queen's Crawley, and her gradual establishment in the good graces of 
all people thare, could be unremarked by Mrs. Bute Crawley. Mrs. Bute, 
who Imew how many days the sirloin of beef lasted at the Hall; how 
much linen was got ready at the great wash ; how many peaches were on ^ 
the south wall ; how many doses her ladyship took when she was ill — for 
such points are matters of intense interest to certain persons in the 
country — ^Mrs. Bute, I say, could not pass over the Hall governess 
without making every inquiry respecting her history and character. There 
was always the best understanding between the servants at the Eectory 
and the Hall. There was always a good glass of ale in the kitchen of the 
former place for the Hall people, whose ordinary drink was very small — 
and, indeed, the Eector's lady knew exactly how much malt went to every 
barrel of HaU beer — ^ties of relationship existed between the Hall and 
Eectory domestics, as between thek masters ; and through these channels 
eadi family was perfectly wdl acquainted with the doings of the other. 
That, by the way, may be set down as a general remark. When you and 
your brother are friends, his doings are indiflferent to you. When you 
have quarrelled, all his outgoings and incomings you know, as if you 
were his spy. 

Very soon then after her arrival, Rebecca began to take a regular place in 
Mrs. Crawley's bulletin from the Hall. It was to this effect : — "The black 
porker's killed — ^weighed x stone — salted the sides — ^pig's pudding and 
leg of pork for dinner. Mr. Cramp, from Mudbury, over with Sir Pitt 
about putting John Blackmore in gaol — Mr. Pitt at meeting (with all the 
names of the people who attended) — ^my lady as usual — the young ladies 
with the governess." 

Then the r^ort would come — ^the new governess be a rare manager — 
Sir Pitt be very sweet on her — Mr. Crawley too — He be reading tracts to 
her— "What an abandoned wretch!" said little, eager, active, black-faced 
Mrs. Bute Crawley. 


Finally, the reports were that the governess had " come round'* 
everybody, wrote Sir Pitt's letters, did his business, managed liis 
accounts — ^had the upper hand of the whole house, my lady, Mr. Crawley, 
the girls and all — at which Mrs. Crawley declared she was an artful 
hussey, and had some dreadful designs in view. Thus the doings at the 
Hall were the great food for conversation at the Bectory, and Mrs. Bute'a 
bright eyes spied out everything that took place in the enemy's camp — 
everything and a great deal besides, 


" Bectory i Queen^s Crawley, December — . 

" My deae Mad aic> — Although it is so many years since I profited by 
your delightful and invaluable instnictions, yet I have ever retained the 
fondest and most reverential regard for Miss Pinkerton and dear Chiswick* 
I hope your health is ffood. The world and the cause of education cannot 
afford to lose Miss Pinkerton for 7nany many years. When my friend. 
Lady Puddleston, mentioned that her dear girls required an instructress 
(I am too poor to engage a governess for mine, but was 1 not educated at 
ChiswickP) — *Who,* I exclaimed, 'can we consult but the excellent, the 
incomparable Miss Pinkerton ?* In a word, have you, dear madam, any 
ladies on your list, whose services might be made available to my kind 
friend and neighbour? I assure you she will take no governess but of your 

** My dear husband is pleased to say that he likes everything whicJi 
comes from Miss Pinkerton s school. How I wish I could present him 
and my beloved girls to the friend of my youth, and the admired of the 
great lexicographer of our country ! K you ever travel into Hampshire, 
Mr. Crawley begs me to say, he hopes you will adorn our rural rectory 
with your presence. 'Tis the humble, but happy home of 

" Your affectionate 

"Maetha Crawley.'^ 

"P.S. Mr. Crawley's brother, the baronet, with whom we are not, 
alas ! upon those terms oi' unity in which it becomes brethren to dwells has 
a governess for his little girls, who, I am told, had the good fortune to be 
educated at Chiswick. I hear various reports of her ; and as I have the 
tenderest interest in my dearest little nieces, whom I wish, in spite of 
family differences, to see among my own children — ^and as I long to be 
attentive to any pupil of yours — do, my dear Miss Pinkerton, tell me the 
history of this young lady, whom, for your sake, I am most anxious to 
befriend.— M. C." 


" Johnson Houte^ Chiswick^ Dec, 18 — . 
" Deae Madam, — I have the honor to acknowledge your polite com- 
munication, to which I promptly reply. 'Tis most gratifying to one in 
my most arduous position to find that my maternal cares have elicited a 
responsive affection ; and to recognize in the amiable Mrs. Bute Crawley 


my excellent pupil of former years, the sprightly and accomplished Miss 
Martha MacTavish, I am happy to have under my charge now, the 
daughters of many of those who were your contemporaries at my esta- 
blishment — ^what pleasure it would give me if your own beloved young 
ladies had need of my instructive superintendence ! 

" Presenting my respectful compliments to Lady Fuddleston, I have 
the honour (epistolarily) to ihtroduce to her ladyship my two friends, Miss 
Tuffin and Miss Hawky. 

" Either of these young ladies is perfectly qualified to instruct in Greek, 
Latin, and the rddunents of Hebrew ; in mathematics and history ; in 
Spanish, French, Italian, and geography; in music, vocal and instni- 
mental ; in dancing, without the aid of a master ; and in the elements of 
natural sciences. In the use of the globes both are proficients. In 
addition to these, Miss Tuflfin, who is daughter of the late Reverend 
Thomas Tuffin, (Fellow of Corpus College, Cambridge,) can instruct in the 
Syriac language, and the elements of Constitutionad law. But as she is 
only eighteen years of age, and of exceedingly pleasing personal appearance, 
perhaps this young lady may be objectionable in Sir Huddleston Fuddle- 
ston's family. 

" Miss Letitia Hawky, on the other hand, is not personally wcll-favoui'ed. 
She is twenty-nine ; her face is much pitted with the small-pox. She has 
a halt in her gait, red hair, and a trifling obliquity of vision. Both 
ladies are endowed with ev)ery moral and religiouB virtue. Their terms, of 
course, 'are such as their accomplishments merit. With my most grateful 
respects to the Eeverend Bute Crawley, I have the honour to be, 

" Dear Madam, 
" Your most faithful and obedient servant, 

" Baebara Pinkerton." 

" P.S. The Miss Sharp, whom you mention as governess to. Sir Pitt 
Crawley, Bart., M.P., was a pupil of mine, and I have nothing to say in 
her disfavour. Though her appearance is disagreeable, we cannot control 
the operations of nature : and though her parents were disreputable (her 
father being a painter, several times bankrupt ; and her mother, as I have 
since learned, with horror, a dancer at the Opera);- yet her talents are con- 
siderable, and I cannot regret that I received her out of cluirity. My 
dread is, lest the principles of the mother — ^who was represented to me as 
a French Countess, forced to emigrate in the late revolutionary horrors ; 
but who, as I have since found, was a person of the very lowest order and * 
morals — ^should at any time prove to be hereditary in the unhappy young 
woman whom I took as an outcast. But her principles have hit/ierto been 
correct (I believe), and I am sure nothing wiU occur to iiyure them in the 
elegant and refined circle of the eminent Sir Pitt Crawley." 


" I have not written to my beloved Amelia for these many weeks past, 
for what news was there to tell of the sayings and doings at Humdrum 
Hall, as I have christened it ; and what do you care whether the tm*nip 
crop is good or bad; whether the fat pig weighed thirteen stone or fourteen; 


and whether the beasts thrive well upon mangelwurzel? Every day since 
I last wrote has been like its neighbour. Before breakfast, a walk with Sir 
Pitt and his spud; after bves^k^Eiet, studies (such as they are) in the 
sehool-room ; after school^'oom, reading and writing about lawyers, leases, 
coal-mines, canals, with Sir Pitt (whose secretary I am become); after 
dinner, Mr. Crawley discourses or the baronet's backgwnmon ; during both 
of which amusements my lady looks on mth equal placidity. She has 
become rather more interesting by being ailing of late, which has brought 
a new visitor to the Halli in the person of a young doctor. Well, my 
dear» young women need never jlespair. The young doctor gave a certain 
friend of youi's to understand that, if she chose to be ]Mrs. Glauber, she 
was welcome to ornament the surgery ! 1 told Ids impudence that the 
gilt pestle and mortar was quite ornament enough ; as if I was bom, 
indeed, to be a country surgeon's wife. Mr. Glauber went home seriously 
indisposed at his rebuff, took a cooling draught, and is now quite cured. 
Sir Pitt applauded my resolution highly ; he would be son*y to lose his 
little seeretary, I think ; and I believe the old wretoh likes me as much as 
it is in Hb nature to like any one- Marry, indeed ! and with a country 

apothecary, after ^No, no, one cannot so soon forget old associations, 

about which I will talk no more. Let us return to Humdrum HdH. 

" For some time past it is Humdrum. Hall no longer. My dear, Miss 
Crawley has arrived with her fat hor«€s, fat servants, fat spaniel — the 
great rich Miss Crawley, with seventy thousand pounds in the five per 
cents., whom, or I had better say toldoh, her two brothers ,adope. She 
looks very apoplectic, the dear soul.; no wonder her brothers nm anidous 
about her. You should see them struggling to settle her cushions, or to 
hand her coiFee 1 * When I come into the country,' she says (for she has a 
great deal of humour), * I leave my toady, Miss Briggs, at home. My 
brothers are my toadies here, my dear, and a pretty pair they are ! ' 

" When she comes into the country om* Hall is thrown open, and for a 
month, at least, you would fancy old Sir Walpole was come to life again. 
We have dinner-parties, and drive out in the coaeh-and-four — the foot- 
men put on their newest canary-eoloured liveries; we drink claret and 
champagne as if we w«re accustomed to it eveiy day. We have wax 
candles in the school-room, and fires to warm ourselves with.. Lady 
Crawley is made to put on the brightest pea-green in her wardrobe, and 
my pupils leave off their thick shoes and tight old tartan pelisses, and 
wear silk stockings and muslin frocks, as fashionable baronets' daughters 
should. Bose came in yesterday in a sad plight — the Wiltshire sow (an 
enormous pet of hers) ran her down, and destroyed a most lovely ffowered 
lilac silk dress by dancing over it — ^had this happened a week ago. Sir 
Pitt would have sworn frightfiiUy, have boxed the poor wretch's ears, and 
put her upon bread and water for a month. All he said was, * I'll serve 
you out, Miss, when your aunt's gone,' and laughed off the accident as 
quite trivial. Let us hope his wrath will have passed away before Miss 
Crawley's departure. I hope so, for Mis& Rose's sake, I am sure. \Miat 
a charming reconciler and peace-makcx money is 1 

" Another admirable effect of Miss Crawley and hex seventy thousand 
pounds is to be- seen in the conduct of the two brothers Crawley. I 

' ^</j >x^^//J>-^.y ayy^f'^ Af'/^/?!^ A^yUf/^^^KJ 


mean tke bar(»Kt and the rector, not our brothers — ^but the foniiDr, who 
hateeach other idl the year round, become quite loving at Christmas. I wrote 
to you hist year how the aboBoinable horse-racing rector was in the habit 
of preaching clumsy sermons at us at church, and how Sir Pitt snored in 
answer — ^when Miss Crawley arrives there is no such thing as quarreling 
heard of — the Hall visits the Eectory, and vice veradr — ^the parson and the 
baronet talk about the pigs and the poachers, and the county business, 
in the most' affable manner, and without quarreling in their cups, I believe 
— ^indeed Miss Crawley won't hear of their quarreling, and vows that she 
will leave her money to the Shropshire Crawleys if they offend her. If 
they were clever people those Shropshire Crawleys they might have it all, 
I think ; but the Shropshire Crawley is a clergyman like his Hampshire 
cousin, and mortally offended Miss Crawky (who had fled thither in a fit 
of rage against her impracticable bretharen) by some strait-laced notions 
of morality. He would have prayers in. the house, I believe. 

" Our sermon-books aa» shut up. wfeen Mias Crawley arrives, and Mr. 
Pitt, whom she abomiiBates, finds it eenrenient to go to town. On the 
other hand, the young dasidy, blood, I b^ve, is the term. Captain Craw- 
lay makes his appearaxice, asd I sisp^ifiee you wouM liike to know what 
sort of a person he is. 

" Well, he is a very lavge young dandty. He is six feet high, and 
speaks with a great voice ; aad swears a great deal ; and orders about the 
servants, who all adore- Wan. nevertheless; for he is very generous of his 
money, and the domestics will do anything for him. Last week the 
keepers almost killed & baiSff and has, naaa who caae down from London 
to arrest the Captain, and who were foaisd lurking about the Park wall — 
they beat them, ducked thiHaiv and were going to shoot them for poachers, 
but the bar(»iet interfered. 

" The Captain has a*haa«ty contempt for has father, I can see, and calls 
him an old jput, an old mob, an old chaw-bacon, and numberless other 
pretty names. He has a dreadful rejmtation among the ladies. He 
brings his hunters home with him, lives with the Squires of the county, 
asks whom he pleases to dimier, and Sir Pitt dares not say no, for fear 
of offending l^s Crawley, and missing his legacy when she dies of her 
apoplexy. Shall I tell you a eompliment the Captain paid me ? I must, 
it is so pretty. One evening we actually had a dance ; there was Sir 
Huddleston Euddlestoa and his family, Sir Giles Wapshot and his young 
ladies, and I don't know how many more. Well, I heard him say — * By 
jove, she 's a neat little filly ! ' meataing your humble servant ; and he did 
me the honour to dance two country-dances with me. He gets on pretty 
gaily with the young Squires, with whom he drinks, bets, rides and talks 
about hunting and shooting ; but he says the country girls are bores ; 
indeed, I don't think he is for wrong. You should see the contempt with 
which they look down on poor me ! "When they dance I sit and play 
the piano very demurely ; bJit the other m'ght coming in rather flushed 
from; the dining-room, and seeing me employed in this way, he swore out 
loud that I was the best dancer in the room, and took a great oath that 
he would have the fiddlers from Mudbury. 

" * I 'U go and play a country-dance,- said [Mrs. Bute Crawley, very 



readily (she is a little, black-faced old woman in a turban, rather crooled, 
and with very twinkling eyes) ; and after the Captain and your poor little 
Kebecca had performed a dance together, do you know she act^y did me 


the honour to compliment me upon my steps ! Such a thing was 
never heard of before; the proud IMrs. Bute Crawley, first eopsin to 
the Earl of Tiptoff, who won't condescend to visit Lady Crawley, except 
when her sister is in the country. Poor Lady Crawley I * during 
most part of these gaieties,' she is up stairs taking pills. 

" Mrs. Bute has aU of a sudden taken a great fancy to me. ' My dear 
Miss Sharp,' she says, * why not bring over your girls to the Rectory ? 
— ^their cousins will be so happy to see them.' I know what she means. 
Signor Clementi did not teach us the piano for nothing ; at wliich price 
Mi's. Bute hopes to get a professor for her children. I can see through 
her schemes, as though she told them to me ; but I shall go, as I am 
determined to make myself agreeable — ^is it not a poor governess's duty, 
who has not a friend or protector in the world ? The Rector's wife paid 
me a score of compliments about the progress my pupils made, and 
thought, no doubt, to touch my heart — ^poor, simple, country soul ! — aa^if 
I cared a fig about my pupils ! 


" Your India muslin and your pink silk, dearest Amelia, are said to 
become me very well. They are a good deal worn now ; but, you know, 
we poor girls can't afford desfrakhea toilettes, Happy, bappy you I who 
have bafHo drive to St. James's Street, and a dear mother who will give 
you any thing you ask. Farewell, dearest girl. 

" Your affectionate 


" P.S. I wish you could have seen the faces of the Miss Blackbrooks 
(Admiral Blackbrook's daughters, my dear) : fine young ladies, with dresses 
from London, when Captain Rawdon selected poor me for a partner ! 

" Here they are. 'Tis the very image of them. Adieu, adieu ! " 

When Mrs. Bute Crawley (whose artifices our ingenious Rebecca had 
so soon discovered) had procured from Miss Sharp the promise of a visit, 
she induced the all-powerful Miss Crawley to make the necessary applica- 
tion to Sir Pitt, and the good-natured old lady, who loved to be gay her- 
self, and to see every one gay and happy round about her, was quite 
charmed, and ready to establish a reconciliation and intimacy between her 
two brothers. It was therefore agreed that the young people of both 


families should visit each othar frequently §&t the future, and the friend- 
ship of course lasted as long as the jovial old mediatrix was there to keep 
the peace. 

" Why did you ask that scoundrd, Petty Crawley, to dine?" said the 
Eector to his lady, as they were walking home through the park. "/ don't 
want the fellow. He looks down upon us country people as so many 
blackamoors. He 's never content unless he gets my yellow-sealed wine, 
which costs me ten shillings a bottle, hang lum ! Besides, he 'a sueh an 
infernal character — ^he 's a gambler — he's a drunkard — ^he 's a profligate 
in every way. He 's killed a man in a duel — ^he 's ova: head and ears in 
debt, and he 's robbed me and mine of the best part of Miss Crawley's 
fortune. Waxy says she has him " — ^here the Eector shook his fist at the 
moon, with something very like an oath, and added, in a melancholious 

tone — *' , down in her will for fifty thousand; and there won't be above 

thirty to divide." 

"I think she 's going," said the Eector's wife. " She was very red in 
the face when we left dinner. I was obliged to unlace her." 

" She drank seven glasses of champagne," said the reverend gentleman, 
in a low voice ; "and filthy champagne it is, too, that my brother poisons 
us with — but you woiaen never know what 's what." 

" We know nothing," said Mrs. Bute Crawky. 

"She drank cherry-brandy after dinner," continued his Beverence, 
" and took cura9ao with hex coffee. I wouldn't take a glass for a five- 
pound note : it laSkk me with heart-bum. She can't stand it, Mrs. 
Crawley — she must go — flesh and lilood won't bear it ! and I lay five to 
two, Matilda 'drops in a year." 

Induing in these solemn speculations, and thinking about his debts, 
and his soa Jim at College, and Frank at Woolwich, and the four girls, 
who were no beauties, poor things, and would not have a pemiy but what 
they got from the aunt's expected legacy, the Rector and his lady walked 
on for a while. 

" Pitt can't be such an infernal villain as to seU the reversion of the 
living. Affld that Methodist milksop of an eldest son looks to Parlia- 
ment," eontinued Mr. Crawley, after a pause. 

" Sir Bitt Crawley will do anything/' said the Sector's Tvife. " We 
must get Miss Crawley to make lum promise it to JauMs." 

" Pitt will promise anything," replied the brother. " He promised 
he 'd pay my college bills, when my, father died : he promised he 'd build 
the new wing to the Beetory : he promised he 'd let me have Jibb's field 
and the Six-acre Meadow — and much he executed his promises ! And 
it 's to this man's son-— this scoundrel, gamble, swindler, nmrderer of 
a Rawdon Crawley that Matilda leaves the bulk of her money. I say it 's 
un-Christian. By Jove, it is. The infamous dog has got every vice 
except hypocrisy, and that belongs to his brother." 

** Hush, my desrest love ! we 're in Sir Pitt's grounds," interpoeed his 

" I say he has got every yice, Mrs. Crawley. Bon't, Ma'am, bally me. 
Didn't he shoot Captain Firebrace? Didn't he rob young Lord Dovedale 
at the * Cocoa-Tree? ' Didn't he cross the fight between Bill 8oame» and 


the Cheshire Trump, by which I lost forty pound ? You know he did ; 
and as for the women, why, you heard that before me, in my own magis- 
trates' room " 

"For Heaven's sake, Mr. Ci-awley," said the lady, "spare me the 

" And you ask this villain into 3'our house !" continued the exasperated 
Eector. " You, the mother of a young family — ^the wife of a dergyman of 
the Church of England. By Jove ! " 

" Bute Crawley, you are a fool," said the Eector's wife, scornfully. 

" Well, Ma'am, fool or not — ^and I don't say, Martha, I 'm so clever as 
you are, I never did. But I won't meet Rawdon Crawley, that 's flat. 
I '11 go over to Huddleston, that I will, and see his blade greyhound, Mrs. 
Crawley ; and I 'U run Lancelot against him for fifty. By Jove, T will ; 
or against any dog in England. But I won't meet that beast Bawdon 

" Mr. Crawley, you are intoxicated, as usual," replied his wife. And 
the next morning, when the Bector woke, and called fot small beer, she 
put him in mind of his promise to visit Sir Huddleston Fuddleston, on 
Saturday, and as he knew he should have a voet flight^ it was agreed 
that he might gallop back again in time for church on Sunday morning. 
Thus it will be seen that the parishioners of Crawjey were equally happy 
in their squire and in their rector. 

Miss C^rawley had not l(mg been established at the Hall before Rebecca's 
fascinations had won the heart of that good-natured London rake, as they 
had of the country innocents whom we -have been describing. Taking her 
accustomed drive, one day, she thought fit to order that " that little gover- 
ness" fliiould accompany her to Mudbury. Before they had returned 
Eebecoa had made a conquest of her ; having made her laugh four times, 
and amused her during the whole of the little journey. 

" Not let Miss Sharp dine at table ! " said she to Sir Pitt, who had 
arranged a dinner of ceremony, and asked all the neighbouring baronets. 
" My dear feature, do you suppose I can talk about the nursery with 
Lady Fuddleston^ or discuss justices' business with that goose, old Sir 
Giles Wap^ot? I insist upon Miss Sharp appearing. Let Lady Crawley 
remain up stairs, if th^'e is no room. But little Miss Sharp 1 Why, 
she 's the only person fit to talk to in the county ! " 

Of course, after such a peremptory order as this, Miss Sharp, the 
governessj received commancL to dine with the illustrious company below 
stairs. - And when Sir Huddleston had, with great pomp and ceremony, 
handed Miss Crawley into dinner, and was preparing to take his place by 
her side, the old lady cried out, in a shrill voice. " Becky Sharp 1 Miss 
Sharp ! Come you and sit by me and amuse me ; and let Sir Huddleston 
s.t by Lady Wapshot." 

When the parties were over, and the carriages had rolled away, the insa- 
tiable Miss Crawley would say, "Come to my dressing-room, Becky, and 
let us abuse the company," — ^which, between them, this pair of friends 
did perfectly. Old Sir Huddleston wheezed a great deal at dinner; Sir 
Giles Wapshot had a pai'ticularly noisy manner of imbibing his soup, and 


her ladyship a wink of the left eye ; aM of which Becky caricatured to 
admiratioTi ; as well as the particulars of the night's conversation ; the 
politics ; the war ; the quarter-sessions ; the famous run with the H. H., 
and those heavy and dreaiy themes, about which country gentlemen 
converse. As for the Misses Wapshots' toilettes and Lady Fuddleston's 
famous yellow hat, Miss Sharp tore them to tatters, to the infinite amuse- 
ment of her audience. 

" My dear, you are a perfect trouvaille" Miss Crawley would say. ** I 
'A-ish you could come to me in London, but I couldn't make a butt of you 
as I do of poor Briggs, — ^no, no, you little sly creature ;>you are too clever 
—Isn't she. Firkin?" 

Mrs. Firkin (who was dressing the very smaH remnant of hair which 
remained on Miss Crawley's- pate), flung up her head and said, *' I think 
Miss is veiy clever," with the most killing sarcastic air. In fact, Mrs. 
Firkin had that natural jealousy which is one of the main principles of every - 
honest woman. 

After rebuffing Sir Huddleston Fuddleston, Miss Crawley ordered that 
Eawdon Crawley should lead her into dinner every day, and that Becky 
should foUow with her cushion — or else she would have Becky's arm and ' 
Kawdon with the pillow. " We must sit together," she said. " " We're 
the only three Christians in the county, my love" — ^in which case, tt must 
be confessed, that religion was at a very low ebb in the county of Hants.- 

Besides being such a fine religionist. Miss Crawley was, as we hjve said, 
an Ultra-liberal in opinions and always took occasion to express these in 
the most candid manner. 

" What is birth, my dear ? " she would say to Kebecca — " Look at my 
brother Pitt; look at the Huddlestons, who have been here since Henry- 
II., look at poor Bute at the parsonage ; — are any one of them equal to you 
in intelligence or breeding? Equal to you — ^they are not even equal to'* 
poor dear Briggs, my companion, or Rincer, my butler. You, my love, 
are a little paragon — ^positively a little jewel — ^You have more brains than 
half the shire — ^if merit had its reward, you ought to be a Duchess — ^no, 
there ought to be no duchesses at all — ^butyou ought to have no superior, 
and I consider you, my love, as my equal in every respect ; and — ^will you 
put some coals on the fire, my dear ; and will you pick this dress of mine, 
and alter it, you who can do it so well?" So this old philanthropist used 
to make her equal run of her errands, execute her millinery, and read her to 
sleep with French novels, every night. 

At this time, as some old readers may recollect, the genteel world had 
been thrown into a 'considerable state of excitement, by two events, which, 
as the papers say, might give employment to gentlemen of the long robe. 
Ensign Shafton had run away with Lady Barbara Fitzurse, the Earl of 
Bmin's daughter and heiress ; and poor Vere Vane, a gentleman who, up 
to forty, had maintained a most respectable character and reared a 
numerous family, suddenly and outrageously left his home, for the sake of 
Mrs. Rougemont, the actress, who was sixty-five years of age. 

" That was the most beautiful part of dear Lord Nelson's character," 
Mss Crawley said. " He went to the deuce for a woman. There must 
be good in a man who will do that. I adore aU imprudent matches. — 


What I like best, is for a nobleman to marry a miller's daughter, as Lord 
Mowerdale did — ^it makes all the women so angry — I wish some great 
man would run away with you, my dear ; I'm sure you're pretty enough." 

" Two post-boys I — Oh ! it would be delightful ! " Rebecca owned. 

•* And what I like next best, is, for a poor fellow to run away with a 
ridi girl. I have set my heart on Bawdon running away with some one." 

*' A. rich some one, or a poor some one ? " 

"Why, you goose ! Bawdon has not a shilling but what I give him. 
He IB eriiUde dette9 — ^he must repair his fortunes, and succeed in the 

" Is he very clever? " Rebecca asked. 

" Clever, my love ? — ^not an idea in the world beyond his horses, and 
liis regiment, and his hunting, and his play ; but' he must succeed — he 's 
«o delightfully wicked. Don't you know he has killed a man, and shot an 
ii^ured father through the hat only ? He 's adored in his regiment ; and 
all the young men at Wattier's and the Cocoa Tree swear by him.* 

When Miss Rebecca Sharp wrote to her beloved friend the account of 
the little. ball at Queen's Crawley, and the manner in which, for the first 
time, Captain Crawley, had distinguished her, she did not, strange to 
relate, give an altogether accurate account of the transaction. The Captain 
liad distinguished her a great number of times before. The Captain had 
met her in a half-score of walks. The Captain had lighted upon her in a 
half-hundred of corridors and passages. The Captain had hung over her 
piano twenty times of an evening, as (My Lady was now up stairs, being 
ill, and nobody heeded her) she sang. The Captain had written her notes 
(the best that the great blundering dragoon could devise and spell ; but 
dulness gets on as well as any other qufdity with women). But when he 
put the first of the notes into the leaves of the song she was singing, the 
fittle governess, rising and looking him steadily in the face, took up the 
triangular missive daintily, and waved it about as if it were a cocked hat, 
and she, advancing to the enemy popped the note into the fire, and 
made him a very low curtsey, and went back to her place, and began to 
sing away again more merrily than ever. 

"What's that?" said Miss Crawley, interrupted in her after-dinner 
doze by the stoppage of the music. 

''It's a false note," Miss Sharp said, with a laugh; and Rawdon 
Crawley fumed with rage and mortification. 

Seeing^ the evident partiality of Miss Crawley for the new governess, 
feow good it was of Mrs. Lute Crawley not to be jealous, and to welcome 
the young lady to the Rectoiy, and not only her, but Rawdon Crawley, 
her husband's rival in the Old Maid's five per cents. ! They became very 
fond, of each other's society, Mrs. Crawley and her nephew. He gave up 
hunting : he declined entertainments at Fuddleston : he would not dine 
with the mess of the depot at Mudbury : his great pleasure was to stroll 

* If atiy1>ody considers this is an overdrawn picture of a noble and influential class of 
fsenofiis, I refer them to contemporaneous histories — such as Byron's Memoirs, for instance; 
in whidk popular Ulustration of Vanity Fair, you have the morals of Richelieu and the 
elegance of Dutch -Sam. 


over to Crawley parsonage — ^wWtfeer Miss Crawley came too ; and as their 
mamma was ill, why not the children with liliss Sharp P So the diildrcn 
(little dears 1) came with Miss Shaip; and of an evening' some of the party 
would walk back together. Not Miss Crawley — she preferred her oar- 
riage — ^but the walk over the Bectory fields, and in at the little park 
wicket, and through the dark pUntation, and up the checkered avenue to 
Queen's Crawley, was charming in the moonl%ht to two such lovos of 
the picturesque as the Ct^ptain and Miss Bebecca. 

'' O those stars, those stars ! " jVIiss Eebecca would say, turning her 
twinkling green eyes up towai'ds them. " I feel myself almost a spirit 
when I gaze upon them." 

** O — ah — Gad — ^j'es, so do I exactly. Miss Sharp," the other enthu- 
siast replied. " You don't mind my cigar, do you. Miss Sharp ?" Miss 
Sharp loved the smell of a cigar out of doors beyond everything in the 
world — and she just tasted one too, in the prettiest way possible, and gave 
a little pnif, and a little scream, and a little giggle, and -restored the deli- 
cacy to the Caj^ain ; who twirled his moustache, and straightway pnffed 
it into a blaze that glowed quite red in the dai'k plantation, and swore — 
" Jove — aw — Gad — aw — ^its the finest segaw I ever smoked in the 
world aw," for his intellect and conversation were alike brilliant and. be- 
coming to a heavy young dragoon. 

Old Sir Pitt, who was taking his pipe and beer, and talking to John 
Horrocks about a " sliip " that was to be killed, espied the pair sa occu- 
pied from his study-window, and with dreadful oaths swore that if it 
wasn't for Miss Crawley, he 'd take Kawdon and bundle un out of doors, 
like a rogue as he was. 

" He be a bad 'n, sure enough," Mr. Horrocks ronarked ; " and his man 
Flethers is wuss, and have made such a row in the housekeeper's room 
about the dinners and hale, as no lord would make — ^but I think Miss 
Sharp 's a match for 'n, Sir Pitt," he added, after a pa;nse. 

And so, in truth, she was — for father and son too. 



E must now take leave of Arcadia, and 

those amiable people practising the rural 

I IT ff '^^^^s there, and travel back to London, 

r^ ^ "^(HW A\ // *^ inquire what has become of Miss Amelia. 

'^ yJ^i^.'tJmVklmll "We don't care a ^g for her," writes 

some unknown correspondent with a pretty 
little hand- writing and a pink seal to her 
note. " She is fade and insipid," and 
adds some more kind remarks in this strain, 
which I should never have repeated at all, 
but that they are in truth prodigiously com- 
plimentary to the young lady whom they 

Has the beloved reader, in his experience 
of society, never heard similar remarks by 
good-natured female friends; who always 
wonder what you can see in Miss Smith that 
is so fascinating ; or what could induce Major 
Jones to propose for that silly insignificant 
simpering Miss Thompson, who has nothing but her wax-doll face to 
recommend her ? What is there in a pair of pink cheeks and blue eyes 
forsooth ? these dear Moralists ask, and hint wisely that the gifts of genius, 
the accomplishments of the mind, the mastery of Mangnall's questions, 
and a ladylike knowledge of botany and geology, the gift of making 
poetry, the power of rattling sonatas in the Herz-manner, and so forth, are 
fer more valuable endowments for a female, than those fugitive charms 
which a few years will inevitably tarnish. It is quite ed%ing to hear 
women speculate upon the worthlessness and the duration of beauty. 

But though virtue is a much finer thing, and those hapless creatures 
who suffer under the misfortune of good looks ought to be continually put 
in mind of the fate which awaits them ; and though, very likely, the heroic 
female character which ladies admire is a more gloriou$and beautifiil 
object than the kind, fresh, smiling, artless, tender little domestic goddess, 
whom men are indined to worship — ^yet the latter and inferior sort of 
women must have this consolation — ^that the men do admire them after all ; 
and that, in spite of all our kind friends' warnings and protests, we go on 
in our desperate error and folly, and shall to the end of the chapter. 
Indeed, for my own part, though I have been repeatedly told by persons 
for whom I have the greatest respect, that Miss Brown is an insignificant 
chit, and Mrs. White has nothing but her jpetit minois chiffonnS^ and Mrs. 


Black has not a word to say for herself ; yet I know that I have had the 
most delightful conversations with Mrs. Black (of course, my dear Madam, 
they are inviolable) ; I see all the men in a cluster round Mrs. White's 
chfior : all the young fellows battling to dance with Miss Brown : and so 
I am tempted to think that to be despised by her sex is a very great com- 
pliment to a woman. 

The young ladies in Amelia's society did this for her very satisfactorily. 
Por instance, there was scarcely any point upon which the Miss Osbomes, 
George's sisters, and the Mesdemoiselles Dobbin agreed so well as in their 
estimate of her very trifling merits : and their wonder that their brothers 
could find any charms in her. " We are kind to her," the Misses Osborne 
said, a pair of fine black-browed young ladies who had had the best of 
governesses, masters, and milliners; and they treated her with such 
extreme kindness and condescension, and patronised her so insufferably, 
that the poor little thing was in fact perfectly dumb in their presence, and 
to all outward appearance as stupid as they thought her. She made 
efforts to like them, as in duty bound, and as sisters of her future husband. 
She passed "long mornings " with them — ^the most dreary and serious of 
forenoons. She drove out solemnly in their great family coach' with them, 
and Miss Wirt their governess, that raw-boned Vestal. They took her to 
the ancient concerts by way of a treat, and to the oratorio, and to St. 
Paul's to see the charity children, where, in such terror was she of her 
friends, she almost did not dare be affected by the hymn the children sang. 
Their house was comfortable ; their papa's table rich and handsome ; their 
society solemn and genteel ; their self-respect prodigious ; they had the 
Jbest pew at the Poundling ; all their habits were pompous and orderly, 
.and all their amusements intolerably duU and decorous. After every one 
of her visits (and how glad she was when they were over !) Miss Osborne 
and Miss Maria Osborne, and Miss Wirt, the vestal governess, asked each 
other with increased wonder, "What could George find in that creature?" 

How is this ? some carping reader exclaims. How is it that Amelia, 
who had such a number of friends at school, and was so beloved there, 
comes out into the world and is spumed by her discriminating sex ? My 
dear Sir, there were no men at Miss Pinkerton's establishment except the 
old dandng-master ; and you would not have had the girls fall out about 
him ? When George, their handsome brother, ran off directly after break- 
fast, and dined from home half-a-dozen times a-week; no wonder the 
neglected sisters felt a little vexation. When young BuUock (of the firm 
of Hulker, Bullock and Co., Bankers, Lombard Street) who had been making 
up to Miss Maria the last two seasons, actually asked Amelia to dance 
the cotillon, could you expect that the former young lady should be 
pleased ? And yet she said she was, like an artless forgiving creature. 
" I 'm so delighted you like dear Amelia," she said quite eagerly to Mr. 
Bullock after the dance. " She's engaged to my brother George ; there 's 
not much in her, but she's the best-natured and most unaffected young 
creature : at home we're aU so fond of her." Dear girl ! who can calcu- 
late the depth of affection expressed in that enthusiastic so ? 

Miss Wirt and these two affectionate young women so earnestly and 
frequently impressed upon George Osborne's mind the enormity of the 


sacrifice lie was making, and his romantic generosity in throwing himself 
away upon Amelia, that I 'm not sure but that he really thought he was 
one of the most deserving characters in the British army, and gave himself 
up to be loved with a good deal of easy resignation. 

Somehow, although he left home every morning, as was stated, and 
dined abroad six days in the week, when his sister believed the infatuated 
youth to be at Miss Sedley's apron-strings :.he was not always with Amelia, 
whilst the world supposed him at her feet. Certain it is that on more 
occasions than one, when Captain Dobbin called to look for his friend, 
Miss Osborne (who was very attentive to the Captain, and anxious to hear 
his military stories, and to know about the health of his dear Mamma), 
Miss Odi)ome would laughingly point to the opposite side of the square, 
and say, " Oh, you must go to the Sedley's to ask for George ; we never 
see him from morning till night." At which kind of speech the Captain 
would laugh in rather an absurd constrained manner, and turn off the con- 
versation, like a consummate man of the world, to some topic of general 
interest, such as the Opera, the Prince's last ball at Carlton House, or 
the weather — that blessing to society. 

" What an innocent it is, that pet of yours," Miss Maria would then 
say to Miss Jane, upon the Captain's departure. " Did you see how he 
blushed at the mention of poor George on duty ?" 

" It 's a pity Frederic Bullock hadn't some of his modesty, Maria," 
replies the elder sister, with a toss of her head. 

** Modesty I Awkwardness you mean, Jane. I don't want Frederic to 
trample a hole in my muslin frock, as Captain Dobbin did in your's at Mrs, 

" In your frock, he, he I How could he ? Wasn't he dancing with 

The fact is, when Captain Dobbin blushed so, and looked so awkward, 
he remembered a circumstance of which he did not think it was necessary 
to inform the young ladies, viz. that he had been calling at Mr, Sedley's 
house already, on the pretence of seeing George, of course, and George 
wasn't there, only poor little Amelia, with rather a sad wistful face, seated 
near the drawing-room window, who, after some very trifling stupid talk, 
ventured to ask, was there any truth in the report that the regiment was 
soon to be ordered abroad ; and had Captain Dobbin seen Mr. Osborne 

The regiment was not ordered abroad as yet ; and Captain Dobbin had 

' not seen George. " He was with his sister, most likely," the Captain said, 

" Should he go and fetch the truant ?" So. she gave him her hand kindly 

and gratefdUy : and he crossed the square ; and she waited and waited, 

but George never came. 

Poor Httle tender heart ! and so it goes on hoping and beating, and 
longing and trusting. You see it 's not much of a life to describe. There 's 
not>much of what you call incident in it. Only one feeling aU day — ^when 
will he come ? only one thought to sleep and wake upon. I believe George 
was playing billiards with Captain Cannon in Swallow Street at the time 
when AiaeKa was asking Captain Dobbin about him ; for he was a jolly 
sociable fellow, and excellent in all games of skill. 




- Once, after three days of absence^ Miss Amelia put on her bonnet, and 
actoallj invaded the Osborne hoiue. *' What ! leave our brother to come 
to us ?" said the young ladies. " Have you had a quarrel, Amelia ? Do 
tell us ! " No, indeed, there had been no quarrel. " Who could quarrel 
with him," says she, with her eyes filled with tears. She only came over 
to-^ to see her dear friends ; they had not met for so long. And this 
day she was so perfectly stupid and awkward, that the Miss Osbomes 
and their governess, who stared after her as she went sadly away, wondered 
m<Hre than ever what Gfeorge could see in poor little AmeUa. 

Of course they did. How was she to bare that timid little heart for 
the inspection of those young ladies with their bold black eyes ? It was 
best that it should shrink and hide itself. I know the ]VGss Osbomes 
were excellent critics of a Cashmere shawl, or a pink satin dip ; and when 
Miss Turner had her's died purple, and made into a spencer ; and when 
Miss Pickford had her ermine tippet twisted into a muff and trimmings, 


1 warrant you the changes did not escape the two intelligent young 
women before mentioned. But there are things, look you, of a finer 
texture than for or satin, and all Solomon's glories, and aR the wardrobe 
of the Queen of Sheba ; — ^things whereof the beauty escapes the eyes of 
many connoisseurs. And there are sweet modest little souls on which you 
light, fragrant and blooming tenderly in quiet shady places; and there 
are garden-ornaments, as big as brass warming-pans, that are fit to stare 
the sun itself out of countenance. Miss Sedley was not of the sun-flower 
sort ; and I say it is out of the rules of all proportion to draw a riolet of 
the size of a double dahlia. 

No, indeed ; the life of a good young girl who is in the paternal nest 
as yet, can't have many of those thrilling incidents to whidi the heroine of 
romance commonly lays claim. Snares or shot may take ofP the old birds 
foraging without — ^hawks may be abroad, from which they escape or by 
whom they suffer; but the young ones in the nest have a pretty comfortfd)le 
unromantic sort of existence in the down and the straw, till it comes to 
their turn, too, to get on the wing. While Becky Sharp was on her own 
wing in the country, hopping on all sorts of twigs, and amid a multiplicity 
of traps, and peclang up her food quite harmless and successful, Amelia 
lay snug in her home of Russell Square ; if she went into the world, it was 
under the guidance of the elders ; nor did it seem that any evil could befai 
her or that opulent cheery comfortable home in which she was affection- 
ately sheltered. Mamma had her morning duties, and her daily drive, and 
that delightfal round of visits and shopping which forms the amusement, 
or the profession as you may call it, of the rich London lady. Papa con- 
ducted his mysterious operations in the city — a stirring place in those 
days, when war was raging all over Europe, and empires were being 
staked ; when the " Courier " newspaper had tens of thousands of sub- 
scribers ; when one day brought you a battle of Vittoria, another a burning 
of Moscow, or a newsman's horn blowing down Russell Square about 
dinner-time announced such a fact as — " Battle of Leipsic — six hundred 
thousand men engaged — total defeat of the French — two hundred thousand 
killed." Old Sedley once or twice came home with a very grave face; and 
no wonder, when such news as this was agitating all the hearts and all the 
Stocks of Europe. 

Meanwhile matters went on in Russell Square, Bloomsbury, just as if 
matters in Europe were not in the least disorganised. The retreat from 
Leipsic made no difference in the number of meals Mr. Sambo took in the 
servant's hall ; the allies poured into France, and the dinner-bell rang at 
five o'clock just as usual. I don't think poor Amelia cared anything about 
Brienne and Montmirail, or was fairly interested in the war until the 
abdication of the Emperor; when she clapped her hands and said prayers, — 
oh, how grateful ! and flung herself into George Osborne's arms with aH 
her soul,' to the astonishment of every body who witnessed thtxt ebullition 
of sentiment. The fact is, peace was declared, Europe was going to be at 
rest; the Corsican was overthrown, and Lieutenant Osborne's regiment 
would not be ordered on service. That was the way in which Miss 
Amelia reasoned. The fate of Europe was Lieutenant George Osborne to 
her. His dangers being over, she sang to Heaven. He was her Europe : 


her emperor : her allied monarclis and august prince regent. He was het 
sun and moon ; and I believe she thought the grand illumination and ball 
at the Mansion House, given to the sovereigns, were especially in honour 
of George Osborne. 

We have talked of shift, self, and poverty, as those dismal instructors 
under whom poor Miss Becky Sharp got her education. Now, love was 
Miss Amelia Sedley's last tutoress, and it was amazing what progress our 
young lady made under that popular teacher. In the course of fifteen 
or eighteen months' daily and constant attention to this eminent finishing 
governess, what a deal of secrets Amelia learned, which Miss Wirt and the 
black-eyed young ladies over the way, which old Miss Pinkerton of Chiswick 
herself, had no cognizance of ! As, indeed, how should any of those prim 
and reputable virgins P With Misses P. and W. the tender passion is out 
of the question: I would not dare to breathe such an idea regarding them. 
Miss Maria Osborne, it is true, was "attached" to Mr. "Frederic Augustus 
Bullock, of the firm of Hulker, Bullock, & Bullock ; but her's was a most 
respectable attachment, and she would have taken BuUock Senior, just the 
same, her mind being fixed as that of a well-bred young woman should 
be, — ^upon a house in Park Lane, a country house at Wimbledon, a hand- 
some chariot, and two prodigious tall horses and footmen, and a fourth of 
the annual profits of the eminent firm of Hulker & Bullock, aU of which 
advantages were represented in the person of Frederic Augustus. Had 
orange blossoms been invented then (those touching emblems of female 
purity imported by us from France, where people's daughters are univer- 
sally sold in marriage), Miss Maria, I say, would have assumed the spotless 
wreath, and stepped into the travelling carriage by the side of gouty, old, 
bald-headed, bottle-nosed Bullock Senior; and devoted her beautiful 
existence to his happiness with perfect modesty, — only the old gentleman 
was married already ; so she bestowed her young affections on the junior 
partner. Sweet, blooming, orange flowers ! The other day I saw Miss 
Trotter (that was), arrayed in them, trip into the travelling carriage at St. 
Greorge's, Hanover Square, and Lord Methuselah hobbled in after. With 
what an engaging modesty she pulled down the blinds of the chariot — 
the dear innocent ! There were half the carriages of Vanity Fair at the 

This was not the sort of love that finished Amelia's education ; and in 
the course of a year turned a good young girl into a good young woman — 
to be a good wife presently, when the happy time should come. This 
young person (perhaps it was very imprudent in her parents to encourage 
her, and abet her in such idolatry and silly romantic ideas) loved, with Si 
her heart, the young officer in his Majesty's service with whom we have 
made a brief acquaintance. She thought about him the very first moment 
on waking; and his was the very last name mentioned in her prayers. 
She never had seen a man so beautiful or so clever : such a figure on 
horseback : such a dancer : such a hero in general. Talk of the Prince's 
bow! what was it to George's ? She had seen Mr. Brummell, whom 
every body praised so. Compare such a person as that to her George ! 
Not amongst all the beaux at the Opera (and there were beaux in those 


days with actual opera hats) was there any one to equal him. He was 
only good enough to be a fairy prince ; and oh, what magnanimity to stoop 
to such a humble Cinderella ! Miss Pinkerton would have tried to check 
this blind devotion very likely, had she been Amelia's confidante ; but net 
with much success, depend upon it. It is in the nature and instinct of 
some women. Some are made to scheme, and some to love ; and I wish 
any respected bachelor that reads this may take the sort that best likes him. 

While under this Qverpoweriog impression. Miss Amelia neglected her 
twelve dear friends at Chiswick most cruelly, as such selfish people com* 
monly will do. She had but this subject, of course, to think about ; and 
Miss Saltire was too cold for a confidante, and she couldn't bring her mind 
to tell Miss Swartz, the woolly-haired young heiress from St. Kittys. She 
had little Laura Martin home for the holidays ; and my belief is, she 
made a confidante of her, and promised that Laura should come and live 
with her when she was married, and gave Laura a great deal of informa- 
tion regarding the passion of love, which must have been singularly useful 
and novel to that little person. Alas, alas ! I fear she had not a well- 
regulated mind. 

What were her parents doing, not to keep this little heart from beating 
so fast ? Old Sedley did not seem much to notice matters. He was 
graver of late, and his City affairs absorbed him. Mrs. Sedley was of so 
easy and uninquisitive a nature, that she wasn't even jealous. Mr. Jos. 
was away, being besieged by an Irish widow at Cheltenham. Amelia had 
the house to herself — ah ! too much to herself sometimes — not that she 
ever doubted ; for, to be sure, George must be at the Horse-Gruards ; and 
he can't, always get leave from Chatham ; and he must see his friends and 
sisters," and mingle in society when in town (he such an ornament to every 
society !) ; and when he is with the regiment, he is too tired to write long 
letters. I know where she kept that packet she had — ^and can steal in 
and out of her chamber like lachimo — ^lie lachimo ? No — ^that is a bad 
part. I will only act Moonshine, and peep harmless into the bed where 
faith and beauty and innocence lie dreaming. 

But if Osborne's were short and soldierlike letters, it must be confessed, 
that were Miss-Sedley's letters to Mr. Osborne to be published, we should 
have to extend this novel to such a multiplicity of volumes as not the most 
sentimental reader could support ; that she not only filled sheets of large 
paper, but crossed them with the most astonishing perverseness ; that she 
wrote whole pages out of poetry-books without the least pity ; that she 
underlined words and passages with quite a frantic emphasis ; and, in fine, 
gave the usual tokens of her condition. She wasn't a heroine. Her letters 
were full of repetition. She wrote rather doubtful grammar sometimes, 
and in her verses took all sorts of liberties with the metre. But oh, mes- 
dames, if you are not allowed to touch the heart sometimes in spite of 
syntax, and are not to be loved until you all know the difference between 
trimeter and tetrameter, may all Poetry go to the deuce, and every school- 
master perish miserably I 



EEAE the gentkinaii to whom Miss 
Amelia's letters were addressed was 
rather an obdurate critic. Sudi a 
number of notes followed Lieutenaat 
Osborne about the country, that he 
became almost ashamed of the jokes 
of his mes8-ro(Hn companions regard- 
iag them, and ordered his seryant never 
to deliver them, except at his private 
apartment. He was seen lighting his 
cigar with one, to the horror of Cs^in 
Dobbin, who, it is my belief, would 
have given a bank-note for the docu- 

For some time George strove to keep the liaison a secret. There was a 
woman in the case, that he admitted. " And not the first either," said Ensign 
Spooney to Ensign Stubbles. " That Osborne 's a devil of a fellow. There 
was a judge's daughter at Demerara went almost mad about him ; then 
there was that beautiful quadroon girl. Miss Pye, at St, Vincent's, you 
know ; and since he 's been home, they say he 's a regular Don Giovanni, 
by Jove." 

Stubbles and Spooney thought that to be a " regular Don Giovanni by 
Jove" was one of the finest qualities a man could possess ; and Osborne's 
reputation was prodigious amongst the young men of Uie regiment. He 
was famous in field-sports, famous at a song, famous on parade ; free witit 
his money, whidi was bountifully supplied by his father. His coats were 
bett^ made than any man's in the regiment, and he had more of th^n. 
He was adored by ihs men. He could drink more than any officer of the 
whole mess, including old Heavytop, the c6lonel. He could spar better 
than Knuckles, the private (who would have been a corporal but for his 
drunkenness, and who had been in the prize-ring) ; and was the best batter 
and bowler, out and out, of the regimental dub. He rode his own horse. 
Greased Lightning, and won the Garrison cup at Quebec races. There 
were other people besides Amelia who worshipped him. StubWes and 
Spooney thought him a sort of Apollo ; Dobbin took him to be an Admi- 
rable Grichton ; and Mrs. Major O'Dowd acknowledged he was an degant 
young fellow, and put her in mind of Fitzjurld Fogarty, Lord Gastle- 
fogarty's second son. 

Well, Stubbles and Spooney and the rest indulged in most romantic con- 
jectures regarding this female correspondence of Osborne's, — opining that 


it waa a BucheM in London, who was in love with him, — or thai it was 
a General's daughter, who was engaged to somebody else, and madly 
attached to him, — or that it was a Member of Farlittment's kdy, who pro- 
posed four horses and an elopement, — or that it was some other yictim 
of a passion delightfully Qxdting, romantic, and disgracefol to all parties, 
on nwie of which conjeetures would Osborne throw the least light, 
leaving his young admirers and friends to invent and ammge their whole 

And the real state of the case would never have been known at all in the 
regiment but for Captain Dobbin's indisoretion. The Captain was eating 
his breakfast one day in the mess-room, while Cackle, the assistant-surgeon, 
and the two above-named worthies were speculating upon Osborne's intrigue 
— Stubbles holdiBg out that the lady was a Duchess about Queen Char- 
lotte's court, and Cackle vowing she was an opera-singer of the worst 
reputation. At this idea Dobbin became so moved, that though his 
mouth was full of egg and bread-and-butter at the time, and though he 
ought not to have spoken- at all, yet he couldn't help blurting out, '' Caokle, 
you 're a thtupid fgol. You 're alwayth talking nonthenl^ and thcandal. 
Othbome ith not going to run off with a Dudiess or ruin a milliner. Miss 
Sedky is one of the most charming yomng women that ever lived. He 's 
been engaged to her ever so long ; and the man who calls her names had 
better not do so in my hearing." With whidi, turning exoeedin^y red, 
Dobbin ceased speaking, and almost choked himself with a cup of tea. The 
story was over the regiment in half-an-hour ; and that very evening Mrs. 
Major O'Dowd wrote off to her sister Glorvina at O'Dowdstown not to 
hurry from DuWin, — ^young Osb<»me being prematurely engaged already. 

She complimented the Lieutenant in an appropriate speech over a glass 
of whisky-toddy that evening, and he went home pcarfectly furious to 
quarrel with Dobbin, (who h£^ declined Mrs. Mijor O'Dowd's party, and 
sat in his own room playing the flute, and, I believe, writing poetry in a 
very melancholy manner)-- to quarrel with Dobbin for betraying his secret. 

'' Who the deuce asked you to talk about my affairs," Osborne shouted 
indignantly. '* Why the devil is all the regiment to know that I am going 
to be married? Why is that tattling old harridan, Peggy O'Dowd, to 
make free with my name over her d— d supper-table, and advertise my 
engagement over the three kingdoms ? After all, what right have you to 
say I am engaged, or to meddle in my business at all, Dobbin ? " 

" It seems to me," — Captain Dobbin began. 

'' Seems be hanged, Dobbin," his junior interrupted him. '' I am 
under obligaticms to you, I know it, a d---d deal too well too ; but I won 't 
be always sermonised by you because you 're live years my senior. I 'm 
hanged if I '11 stand your airs of superiority and infernal pity and patron- 
age. Pity and patronage! I should like to know in what I'm your 
inferior ? " 

'' Are you engaged ? " Captun Dobbin interposed. 

" What the devil's that to you or any one here if I am? " 

" Are you ashamed of it ? " Dobbin resumed. 

« What right have you to ask me that question, sir ? I should like to 
know," George said. 


** Good God, you don't mean to say you want to break off?" asked 
Dobbin, starting up. 

" In other words, you ask me if I 'm a man of honour," said Osborne, 
fiercely ; " is that what you mean ? You Ve adopted such a tone regarding 
me lately that I 'm if I 'U bear it any more." 

" What have I done P I Ve told you you were neglecting a sweet girl, 
George. I Ve told you that when you go to town you ought to go to her, 
and not to the gambling-houses about St. James's." 

" You want your money back, I suppose," said Gkorge, with a sneer. 

" Of course I do — ^I always did, didn't IP" says Dobbin. " You speak 
like a generous fellow." 

" No, hang it, William, I beg your pardon " — here George interposed 
in a fit of remorse ; " you have been my friend in a hundred ways. 
Heaven knows. You've got me out of a score of scrapes. When 
Crawley of the Guards won that sum of money of me I should have been 
done but for you : I know I should. But you shouldn't deal so hardly 
with me ; you shouldn't be always catechizing me. I am very fond of 
Amelia ; I adore her, and that sort of thing. Don't look angry. She's 
faultless ; I know she is. But you see there 's no frm in winning a thing 
unless you play for it. Hang it ; the regiment's just back from the West 
Indies, I must have a little &ig, and then when I 'm married I '11 reform ; 
I will upon my honour, now. And — I say — ^Dob — don't be angry with 
me, and I '11 give you a hundred next month, when I know my father will 
stand sometlmig handsome ; and I'U ask Heavy top for leave, and I '11 go 
to town, and see Amelia to-morrow — there now, will that satisfy you?" 

** It's impossible to be long angry with you, G«orge," said the good- 
natured Captain ; " and as for the money, old boy, you know if I wanted 
it you 'd share your last shilling with me." 

" That I woidd, by Jove, Dobbin," George said, with the greatest gene- 
rosity, though by the way he never had any money to spare. 

" Only I wish you had sown those wild oats of yours, George. If you 
could have seen poor little Miss Emmy's face when she asked me about 
you the other day, you would have pitched those bOliai'd-balls to the deuce. 
Go and comfort her, you rascal. Go and write her a long letter. Do 
something to make her happy ; a very little will." 

" I believe she 's d — d fond of me," the Lieutenant said, with a self- 
satisfied air ; and went off to finish the evening with some jolly fellows in 
the mess-room. . 

Amelia meanwhile, in Bussell Square, was looking at the moon, which was 
shining upon that peaceful spot, as well as upon the square of the Chatluim 
barracks, where Lieutenant Osborne was quartered, and thinking to her- 
self how her hero was employed. Perhaps he is visiting the sentries, ~ 
thought she ; perhaps he is bivouacking ; perhaps he is attending the 
couch of a wounded comrade, or studying the art of war up in his own de- 
solate chamber. And her kind thoughts sped away as if they were angels 
and had wings, and flying down the river to Chatham and Eochester, strove 
to peep into the barracks where George was. 

All things considered, I think it was as well the gates were shut, and 
the sentry allowed no one to pass; so that the poor little white-robed angel 



Ml hJrr!^ 

could not hear the songs those young fellows were roaring over the whiskey- 

The day after the little conversation at Chatham barracks, young 
Osborne, to show that he would be as good as his word, prepared to go 
to town, thereby incurring Captain Dobbin's applause. " I should have 
liked to make her a little present," Osborne said to his friend in confi- 
dence, "only I am quite out of cash until my father tips up." But 
Dobbin would not allow this good nature and generosity to be balked, and 
so accommodated Mr. Osborne with a few poimd notes, which the latter 
took after a little faint scruple. 

And I dare say he would have bought something very handsome for 
Amelia ; only, getting off the coach in Fleet Street, he was attracted by a 
handsome shirt-pin in a jeweller's window, which he could not resist ; and 
having paid for that, had very little money to spare for indulging in any 
ftirther exercise of kindness. Never mind : you may be sure it was not his 
presents Amelia wanted. When he came to Bussell Square, her face 
lighted up as i^he had been sunshine. The little cares, fears, tears, timid 
misgivings, sleepless fancies of I don't know how many days and nights, 
were forgotten, under one moment's influence of that familiar, irresistible 


smile. He beamed on her from the drawing-room door — ^magnificent, 
with ambrosial whiskers, like a god. Sambo, whose face as he announced 
Captain Osbin (haying conferred a brevet rank on that young officer) 
blazed with a sympathetic grin, saw the little girl start, and flush, and 
jump up from her watching-place in the window ; and Sambo retreated : 
and as soon as the door was shut, she went fluttering to Lieutenant George 
Osborne's heart as if it was the only natural home for her to nestle in. 
Oh, thou poor panting little soul ! The very finest tree in the whole 
forest, with the straightest «tam, and the strongest arms, and the thickest 
foliage, wherein you choose io build and coo, may be marked, for what 
you know, and may be down with a crash ere long. What an old, old 
sinule that is, between man and taaiber 1 

In the meanwhile, Greorge kissed her very kindly on her forehead and 
glistening eyes, and was voj giadboas and good ; and she thought his 
diamond shirt-pin (whidi she had aot loMwn him to wear before) the pret^ 
tiest ornament ever seen. 

The observant reader, who has marked our young Lieutenant's previous 
behaviour, and has preserved our report of the brirf conversation which he 
has just had with Captain Bobbin, has possibly come to certain conclu- 
sions regarding the diaracter of Mr. Osborne. Some cynical Frenchman 
has said that there are two parties to a love-transaction: the one who loves 
and the other who condescends to be so treated. Perhaps the love is 
occasionally on the man's side: perhaps on ihe lady's. Perhaps some 
infatuated swaia has ere this mistaken insensMity for modesty, dullness 
for maiden-reserve, mere vacuity for sweet bashfalness, and a goose, in a 
word, for a swan. Perhaps some beloved female subscriber has arrayed an 
ass in the splendour and glory of her imagination ; admired his dullness 
as manly simplicity ; worshipped his selfishness as manly superiority ; 
treated his stupidity as majestic gravity, and used him as the brilliant 
fairy Titania did a certain carpenter of Athens. I think I have seen such ' 
comedies of errors going on in the world. But this is certain, that Amelia 
beKeved her lover to be one of the most gallant and brilliant men in the 
empire : and it is possible Lieutenant Osborne thought so too. 

He was a little wild : how many young men are ; and don't girls Kke 
a rake better than a milksop? He hadn't sown his wild oats as yet, but 
he would soon : and quit the army, now that peace was proclaimed ; th& 
Corsican monster locked up at Elba ; promotion by consequence over ; and 
no chance left for the display of his undoubted mifitary tafents and valour : 
and his allowance, with Amelia's settlement, would enable them to take a 
snug place in the country somewhere, in a good sporting neighbourhood ; 
and he would hunt a little, and farm a little; and they would be very 
happy. As for remaining in the army as a married man, that was impos- 
sible.* Fancy Mrs. George Osborne in lodgings in a country town; 
or, worse stOl, in the East or West Indies, with a society of officers, 
and patronized by Mrs. Major O'Dowd ! Amelia died with laughing at 
Osbcine's stories about Mrs. Major O'Dowd. He loved* her much too 
fondly to subject her to that horrid woman and her vulgarities, and the 
rough treatment of a soldier's wife. He didn't care for himself — ^not he ; 

c v^y ^j ^'rt //^:/ ////'' ^/^> 

-///r- ^,^ . ^, ////■■ 0,7 


but bis dear little girl sbould take tbe pkce in society to wbicb as his wife 
sbe was entitled : and to these propos^ you may be sure she acceded, av 
she would to any other from the same author. 

Holding this kind of conversation, and building numberless castles in 
the air (which Amelia adorned with all sorts of fbwer-gardens, rustic 
walks, country churches, Sunday schools, and the like ; while George had 
his mind's eye directed to the stables, the kennel, and the cellar), thia 
young pair passed away a couple of hours very pleasantly; and as the 
Lieutenant had only that single day in town, and a great deal of most 
important business to transact, it was proposed that Miss Emmy should 
dine with her future sisters-in-law. This invitation was accepted joyfully. 
He conducted her to his sisters ; where he left her talking and prattUng in 
a way that astonishisd those ladies, who thought that George might make 
something of her ; and then went off to transact his business. 

In a word, he went out and ate ices at a pastry-cook's shop in Charing. 
Cross ; ttied a new coat in Pall Mall ; dropped in at the Old Slaughters', 
and called for Captain Cannon; played eleven games at billiards with the 
Captain, of which he won eight,. and returned to Bussell Squai*e half-an- 
hour kte for dinner, but in very good humour* 

It was not so with old Mr. Osborne. When that gentleman came from 
the city, and was welcomed in the drawing-room by his daughters and the 
elegant Miss Wirt, they saw ^ o6ce by his face — ^which was puffy, solemn, 
and yellow at the best of .times-— and by the scowl and twitching of his 
black eye-brows, that tbe heart within his large white waistcoat was 
disturbed and uneasy. When Amelia stepped forward to salute him, 
which she always did with great trembUng and timidity, he 'gave a 
surly grunt of recognition, and dropped the little hand out of his great 
hirsute paw without any attempt to hold it there. He looked round 
gloomily at his eldest daughter ; who, comprehending the meaning of his 
look, which asked unmistakeably, " Why the devil is site here ?" said at 
once : — 

'' George is in town, Psqia ; and has gone to the Horse Guards, and 
will be back to dinner." 

" O he is, is he ? I won't have the dinner kepi waiting for kim, 
Maria :" with which this worthy man lapsed into his particular chair, and 
then the utter silence in his genteel, well-furnished drawing-room, was 
only intefrupted by the alarmed ticking of the great French dock. 

Whan that chronometer, which was surmounted by a cheerM brass 
group of the sacrifice of Iphigenia, tolled five in a heavy cathedral tone, 
Mr. Osborne puUed the bell at his right hand violently, and the butler 
rushed up. 

** Dinner ! '* roated Mr. Osborne. 

" Mr. George isn't eome in, sir," interposed the man. 

"Damn Mr. George, sir. Ami master of the house? DinneeI" 
Mr. Osborne scowled, Amelia trembled. A telegraphic communication 
of eyes passed between the other three hidies. The obedient bell in the 
lower regions began ringing the announcement of the meal. The toHing 
ov^, tilie hetui ci tbe family thrust his hands into the great tail-pocketa of 


his great blue coat and brass buttons, and witliQut waiting for a further 
announcement, strode down stairs alone, scowling over his shoulder at the 
four females. 

" What 's the matter now, my dear ? " asked one of the other, as they 
rose and tripped gingerly behind the sire. 

"I suppose the funds are falling," whispered Miss Wirt; and so, 
trembling and in silence, this hushed female company followed their dark 
leader. They took their places in silence. He growled out a blessing, 
which sounded as gruflBiy as a curse. The great silver dish-covers were 
removed. Amelia trembled in her place, for she was next to the awful 
Osborne, and alone on her side of the table, — ^the gap being occasioned by 
the absence of George. 

" Soup?" says Mr. Osborne, clutching the ladle, fixing his eyes on her, 
in a sepulchral tone ; and having helped her and the rest, did not speak for 
a while. 

" Take Miss Sedley's plate away," at last he said. " She can't eat the 
soup — ^no more can I. It 's beastly. Take away the soup. Hicks, and 
to-morrow turn the cook out of the house, Maria." 

Having concluded his observations upon the soup, Mr. Osborne made a 
few curt remarks respecting the fish, also of a savage and satirical ten- 
dency, and cursed Billingsgate with an emphasis quite worthy of the 
place. Then he lapsed into silence, and swallowed sundry glasses of wine, 
looking more and more terrible, till a brisk knock at the door told of 
George's arrival, when everybody began to rally. 

" He could not come before. General Daguilet had kept him waiting at 
the Horse Guards. Never mind soup or fish. Give lum anything — he 
didn't care what. Capital mutton — capital everything." His good- 
humour contrasted with his father's severity ; and he rattled on unceas- 
ingly during dinner, to the delight of all — of one especially, who need not 
be mentioned. 

As soon as the young ladies had discussed the orange and the glass of 
wine which formed the ordinary conclusion of the dismal banquets at Mr. 
Osborne's house, the signal to make sail for the drawing-room was given, 
and they all arose and departed. Amelia hoped George would soon join 
them there. She began playing some of his favourite waltzes (then newly 
imported) at the great carved-legged, leather-cased grand piano in the 
drawing-room overhead. TMs Httle artifice did not bring him. He was 
deaf to the waltzes ; they grew fainter and fainter ; the discomfited per- 
former left the huge instrument presently ; and though her three friends 
performed some of the loudest and most brilliant new pieces of their rSper- 
toire, she did not hear a single note, but sate thinking, and boding evil. 
Old Osborne's scowl, terrific always, had never before looked so deadly to 
her. His eyes followed her out of the room, as if she had been guilty of 
something. When they brought her coffee, she started as though it were 
a cup of poison which Mi. Hiclra, the butler, wished to propose to her. What 
mystery was there lurking ? Oh those women ! They nurse and cuddle 
their presentiments, and make darlings of their ugliest thoughts, as they do 
of theur deformed children. 

The gloom on the paternal countenance had also impressed George 


Osborne with anxiety. With such eyebrows, and a look so decidedly 
bilious, how was he to extract that money from the governor, of which 
Greorge was consumedly in want ? He began praising his father's wine. 
That was generally a successful means of cajoHng the old gentleman. 

"We never got such Madeira in the West In£es, sir, as yours. Colonel 
Heavy top took off three bottles of that you sent me down, under his belt 
the other day." 

" Did he ? " said the old gentleman. " It stands me in eight shillings 
a bottle." 

" Will you take six guineas a dozen for it, sir ? " said George, with a 
laugh. ^. " There 's one of the greatest men in the kingdom wants some." 

** Does he ? " growled the senior. " Wish he may get it." 

" When Greneral Daguilet was at Chatham, sir, Heavytop gave him a 
breakfast, and asked me for some of the wine. The General &ed it just 
as well — ^wanted a pipe for the Commander-in-Chief. He 's his Boyal 
Highness's right-hand man." 

" It is devflish fine wine," said the Eyebrows, and they looked more 
good-humoured ; and George was going to take advantage of this com- 
placency, and bring the supply question on the mahogany; when the 
father, relapsing into solemnity, though rather cordial in manner, bade him 
ring the bell for claret. " And we 'U see if that 's aa good as the Madeira, 
Greorge, to which his Eoyal Highness is welcome, I 'm sure. And as we 
are drinking it, I '11 talk to. you about a matter of importance." 

Amelia heard the claret bell ringing as she sat nervously up-stairs. She 
thought, somehow, it was a mysterious and presentimental bell. Of the 
presentiments which some people are always having, some surely must 
come right. 

** What I want to know, George," the old gentleman said, after slowly 
smacking his first bumper. " What I want to know is, how you and — 
ah — ^that little thing up-stairs, are carrying on? " 

" I think, sir, it 's not hard to see," George said, with a self-satisfied 
grin. " Pretty clear, sir.— rWhat capital wine ! " 

" What d' you mean, pretty clear, sir P" 

" Why, hang it, sir, don't push me too hard. I 'm a modest man. I — 
ah — ^I don't set up to be a lady-killer ; but I do own that she 's as devilish 
fond of me as she can be. Any body can see that with half an eye." 

" And. you yourself? " 

" Why, sir, didn't you order me to marry her, and ain't I a good boy ? 
Havn't our Papas settled it ever so long ? " 

" A pretty boy, indeed. Havn't I heard of your doings, sir, with 
Lord Tarquin, Captain Crawley of the Guards, the Honorable Mr. Deuceace 
and that set. Have a care, sir, have a care." 

The old gentleman pronounced these aristocratic names with the 
greatest gusto. Whenever he met a great man he grovelled before him, 
and my-lorded him as only a free-bom Briton can do. He came home 
and looked out his history in the Peerage : he introduced his name into his 
daily conversation ; he bragged about his Lordship to his daughters. He 
fell down prostrate and basked in him as a Neapolitan beggar does in the 
sun. George was alarmed when he heard the names. He feared his 


father might have been informed of certam transactions at play. But the 
old moraUst eased him by saying serenely, 

" Well, well, young men will be young men. And the comfoi-t to me 
is, George, that living in the best society in England, as I hope you do ; 
as I think you do ; as my means will allow you to do-^'* 

" Thank you, sir," says Gteorge, making his point at once. " One can't 
live with these great folka for nothing ; and my purse, sir, look at it ;" 
and he held up a little token which had been netted by AmeKa, and con- 
tained the very last of Dobbin's pound notes. 

" You shan't want, sir. The British merchant's son shanH want, sir. 
My gaineas are as good as theirs George, my boy ; and I dont grudge 
'em. Call on Mr. Chopper as you go through the City to-morrow ; he'U 
have something for you. ' I dont grudge moneys when I know you 're in 
good society, because I know that good society can never go wrong. 
There 's no pride in me. I wa» a humbly bom man— 4)ut you have had 
advantages. Make a good use of 'em. Mix with the young nobility. 
There 's many of 'em who can't spend a dollar to your guinea, my boy. 
And as for the pink bonnets (here from under the heavy eyebrows there 
came a knowing and not very pleasing leer) — ^why boys will be boys. 
Only there 's one thing I order you to avoid, which, if you do not, I 'U 
cut you off with a shilling, by Jove ; and that's gambling, sir." 

" Oh, of course, sir," said George. 

" But to return to the other business about Amelia : why shouldn't you 
marry higher than a stockbroker's daughter, George— that's what I want 
to know?" 

" It 's a family business, sir," says George, cracking jBlberts. " Ton and 
'Mi. Sedley made the match a hundred years ago." 

" I don't deny it ; but people's positions altw, sir. I don't deny that 
Sedley made my fortune, or rather put me in the way of acquiring, by my 
own talents and genius, that proud position, which, I may say, I occupy in 
the tallow trade and the City of London. I 've shown my gratitude to 
Sedley ; and he 's tried it of late, sir, as my dieck-book can show. 
George ! I tell you in confidence I don't like the looks of Mr. Sedley's 
affairs. My chief clerk, Mr. Chopper, does not like the looks of 'em, and 
he's an old file, and knows Change as well as any man in London. 
Hulker and Bullock are looking shy at him. He 's been dabbling on his 
own account I fear. They say the Jeune Amelie was his, which was taken 
by the Yankee Privateer Molasses. And that 's flat, — ^unless I see Amelia's 
ten thousand down you don't marry her. I'll have no lame duck's 
daughter in my family. Pass the wine, sir — or ring for coffee." 

With which Mr. Osborne spread out the evening-paper, and George 
knew from this signal that the colloquy was ended, ^d that his Papa was 
about to take a nap. 

He hurried up stairs to AmeKa in the highest spirits. What was it 
that made him more attentive to her on that night than he had been for a 
long time — ^more eager to amuse her, more tender, more brilliant in talk ? 
Was it that his generous heart warmed to her at the prospect of misfor- 
tune ; (w that the idea of losing the dear little prize made him value it more ? 

She lived upon the recollections of that happy evening for many days 



^^^y^/i/zu^ ^i^K.:-/M^' y/wy/ /y^j aU'^'/y ^?^^' 6:^^>^.j 



afterwards, remembering his words ; his looks ; the song he sang ; his 
attitude, as he leant over her or looked at her from a distance. As it 
seemed to her, no night ever passed so quickly at Mr. Osborne's house 
before ; and for once this young person was almost provoked to be angry 
by the premature arrival of Mr. Sambo with her shawl. 

George came and took a tender leave of her the next morning : and 
then hurried off to the City, where he visited Mr. Chopper, his father's 
head man, and received from that gentleman a document which he 
exchanged at Hulker and Bullock's for a whole pocket-full of money. A» 
George entered the house, old John Sedley was passing out of the banker's 
parlour, looking very dismal. But his godson was much too elated to 
mark the worthy stockbroker's depression, or the dreary eyes which the 
kind old gentleman cast upon him. Young Bullock did not come grinning 
out of the parlour with him as had been his wont in former years. 

And as the swinging doors of Hulker, Bullock and Co. closed upon Mr. 
Sedley, Mr. Quill, the cashier (whose benevolent occupation it is to hand 
out crisp bank-notes from a drawer and dispense sovereigns out of a 
copper-shovel), winked at Mr. Driver, the clerk at the desk on his right. . 
Mr. Driver winked again. 

" No go," Mr. D. whispered. 

" Not at no price," Mr. CI. said. *' Mr. George Osborne, sir, how will^ 
you take it?" Greorge cranmied eagerly a quantity of notes into his 
pockets, and paid Dobbin fifty pounds that very evening at mess. 

That very evening Amelia wrote him the tenderest of long letters. Her 
heart was overflowing with tenderness, but it still foreboded evil. What 
was the cause of Mr. Osborne's dark looks ? she asked. Had any differ- 
ence arisen between , him and her Papa ? Her poor Papa returned so 
melancholy from the City, that all were alarmed about him at home — in 
fine, there were four pages of loves und fears and hopes and forebodings. 

" Poor little Emmy — dear little Emmy. How fond she is of me," 
George said, as he perused the missive — " and, Gadj what a headache 
that mixed punch has given me ! " Poor little Emmy, indeed. 

l\ / 



BOUT tliis tmst thwfe drove up to m 
ex^se^dmgly snug and weU appMnited 
liotise in Faa^k Lane, a travdUmg chariot 
witk a lozenge onr tke peantU, a dis- 
^nteated femle ift a gre^ t^ aiMf 
crimped carls ott t^ nEttil)le, and a 
large and oonidential man on the bot. 
It was tke equipage of our friend llfiss 
Crawley, retttrtdng fkwi Hants. The 
windows of the carriage were shut: 
the fat spaniel, whose head aad ton-gse 
ordinarily lolled ont of one of them, 
reposed on the lap of the diseontented 
female. When the vehicle stopped, a large round bundle of shawls was taken 
out of the carriage by the «d of various domestics and a young lady who 
accompanied the heap of ctoaks. That bundle contained Miss Crawley, 
who was conveyed up-stairs forthwith, and put into a bed and chamber 
warmed properly as for the reception of an invalid. Messengers went off 
for her physician and medical man. They came, eonsulted, prescribed, 
vanished. The young companion of Miss Crawley, at the conclusion of 
their interview, came in to receive their instructions, and administered 
those antiphk^stic medicmes which ihJb evninent mfcn ordered. 

Captain Crawley of the Life Gruards rode up from Knightsbridge Bar- 
ra^-s the next day : his blade charger pawed the straw before his invalid 
aunt's door. He was most affectionate in his inquiries regarding that 
amiable relative. There seemed to be much source of apprehension. He 
found Miss Crawley's maid (the discontented female) unusually sulky and 
despondent : he found Miss Briggs her dame de compagnie in tears alone in 
the drawing-room. She had hastened home, hearing of her beloved friend's 
illness. She wished to fly to her couch, that couch which she, Briggs, had 
so often smoothed in the hour of sickness. She was denied admission to 
Miss Crawley's apartment. A stWfflger was administering her medicines 
— ^a stranger from the country— an odious Miss . . . tears choked the 
utterance of the dame de compagnie, and she buried her crushed affections 
and her poor old red nose in her podiet handkerchief. 

Kawdon Crawley sent up his name by the sulky femme de chambre, and 
Miss Crawley's new companion, coming tripping down from the sick- 
room, put a little hand into his as he stepped forward eagerly to meet her, 
gave a glance of great scorn at the bewildered Briggs, and, beckoning the 
young Guardsman out of the back drawing-room, led him down stairs into 
that now desolate dining-parlour, where so many a good dinner had been 


Here tbe«e twty talked for ten minutes, diwassiag, no doubt, the symp- 
toms of the old inralid above stairs; at the end of which period the 
pariotur-beU WHS rang brisldy, and answered on that instant by Mr. Bowls, 
Miss Crawley's large confidwitial biitler (who, indeed, happened te be at 
the keyhole during the most part of the interview) ; and the Captain coming 
out, curHitg his moustaehios, mounted the black charger pawing among 
the straw to the admiration of the little blackguard boys collected in tlw 
street. He looked in at the dining-room 'mndow, managing his horse^. 
which curvetted aaid capered beautifi&y — ^for one instant the young persoft 
Bright be seen at the window, then her figure vanished, and, doubtless, she 
went-up stanrs again to resume the affecting duties of benevolence. 

Who could this young woman be, I wonder P Hiat evening a Kttfe 
dinner for two persons was laid in the dining-room — ^when Mrs. Firkin, 
the lady's maid, pushed into her mistress's apartment, and bustled about 
there during the vacancy occasioned by the departure of the new nurse — 
amd the latter and Mi«s Briggs sat down to the neat little meal. 

Briggs was so much choked by emotion that she could hardly t»ke a 
morsel of meat. The young person carved a fowl with the utmos* 
delicacy, and asked so distinctly for egg-sauce, that poor Mggs, before 
whom that delicious condiment was placed, started, made a great clatter- 
ing with the lafie, and once more fell back in the most gushing hysterical 

"Had yoii not better give Miss Briggs a glass of wine?" said the 
person to Mr. Bowls, the large confidential man. He did so. Briggs 
seized it mechanically, gasped it down convulsively, moaned a little, and 
began to play with the chicken on her plate. 

" I think we shall be able to help each other,'* said the person with 
great suavity : " and shall have no need of Mr. Bowk's kind services. 
Mr. Bowls, if you please, we will ring when we want you." He went 
down stairs, where, by the way, he vented the most horrid curses upon 
the unoffending footman, his subordinate. 

" It is a pity you take on so, Mi«s Briggs," the young lady said, with a 
cool, slightly sarcastic, air. 

' "My dearest friend is so ill, and wo— o — o-*on't see me," gurgled 
i&ut Briggs in an agony of renewed grief. 

" She 's not very m any more. Console yourself, dear Miss Brigga. 
She has only overeaten hersdf — ^that is aU. She is greatly better. She 
will soon be quite restored again. She is weak from being cupped and 
from medioal treatment, but she will rally immediately. Pray console 
yourself, and take a little more wine." 

" But why, why won't she see me again ?" Miss Briggs bleated out. 
**Oh, Matilda, Matilda, after three-and-twenty years' tenderness! is this 
the return to your poor, poor Ai'abella?" 

'• Don't cry too much, poor Arabella," the other said (with ever so 
little of a gi-in) ; ** she only won't see you, because she says you don't nurse 
hfer as well as I do. It 'a no pleasure to me to sit up all night. I wish 
you might do it instead." 

" Have I n6t tended that dear couch for years ? " Arabella said, ** and 

B©W— " 

I 2 


" Now she prefers somebody else. Well, sick people liave these fimcies, 
and must be humoured. When she 's well I shall go." 

" Never, never," Arabella exclaimed, madly inhaling her salts-bottle. 

*• Never be well or never go P Miss Briggs," the other said, with the 
tame provoking good nature. " Pooh — she w^ be well in a fortnight, 
when I shall go back to my little pupils at Queen's Crawley, and to their 
mother, who is a great deal more sick than our friend. You need not be 
jealous about me, my dear Miss Briggs. I am a poor little girl without 
any friends, or any harm in me. I don't want to supplant you in Miss 
Crawley's good graces. She will forget me a week after I am gone : and 
her affection for you has been the work of years. Give me a little wine 
if yoii please, my dear Miss Briggs, and let us be friends. I 'm sure I 
want friends." 

The placable and soft-hearted Briggs speechlessly pushed out her hand 
at this appeal ; but she felt the desertion most keenly for all that, and 
bitterly, bitterly moaned the fickleness of her Matilda. At the end of 
half an hour, the meal over. Miss Eebecca Sharp (for such, astonishing to 
state, is the name of her who has been described ingeniously as the person 
hitherto), went up-stairs again to her patient's rooms, from which, with 
the most engaging politeness, she eliminated poor Firkin. " Thank you, 
Mrs. Firkin, that will quite do ; how nicely you make it I I will ring 
when anything is wanted." " Thank you ;" and Firkin came down stairs 
in a tempest of jealousy, only the more dangerous because she was forced 
to confine it in her own bosom. 

Could it be the tempest which, as she passed the landing of the first 
floor, blew open the drawing-room door ? No ; it was stealthily opened 
by the hand of Briggs. Briggs had been on the watch. Briggs too well 
hQard the creaking Firkin descend the stairs, and the dink of the spoon 
and gruel-basin the neglected female carried. 

" Well, Firkin?" says she, as the other entered the apartment. "Well, 

" Wuss and wuss, Miss B.," Fisher said, wagging her head. 

" Is she not better then?" 

** She never spoke but once, and I asked her if she felt a little more 
easy, and she told me to hold my stupid tongue. Oh, Miss B., I never 
thought to have seen this day ! " And the water-works again began to play. 

" What sort of a person is this Miss Sharp, Firkin ? I little thought, 
while eigoying my Christmas revels in the elegant home of my firm friends, 
the Beverend Lionel Delamere and his amiable lady, to find a stranger had 
taken my place in the affections of my dearest, my still dearest Matilda 1 " 
Miss Briggs, it will be seen by her language, was of a literary and senti- 
mental turn, and had once published a vokune of poems — "Trills of the 
Nightingale" — by subscription. 

" Miss B., they are aU infatyated about that young woman," Firkin 
replied. " Sir Pitt wouldn't have let her go, but he daredn't refiise Miss 
Crawley anythink. Mrs. Bute at the Rectory jist as bad — ^never happy 
out of her sight. The Capting quite wild about her. Mr. Crawley mortial 
jealous. Since Miss C* was took ill, she won't have nobody near her but 
Miss Sharp, I can't tell for where nor for why ; and I think somethink 
has bewidged everybody." 


Bebecca passed that night in constant watcMng upon Miss Crawley; the 
next night the old lady slept so comfortably, that Bebecca had time for 
several hours' comfortable repose herself on the sofa, at the foot of her 
patroness's bed ; very soon, Miss Crawley was so well that she sat up 
and laughed heartily at a perfect imitation of Miss Briggs and her grief, 
which Bebecca described to her. Briggs' weeping snuffle, and her manner 
of using the handkerchief, were so completely rendered, that Miss Crawley 
became quite cheerful, to the admiration ^f the doctors when they visited 
her, who usually found this worthy woman of the world, when the least 
sickness attacked her, under the most abject depression and terror of death. 

Captain Crawley came every day, and received bulletins from Miss 
Bebecca respecting his aunt's health. This improved so rapidly, that 
poor Briggs was allowed to see her patroness ; and persons with tender 
hearts may imagine the smothered emotions of that sentimental female, 
and the affecting nature of the interview. 

Miss Crawley liked to have Briggs in a good deal soon. Bebecca used 
to mimic her to her face with the most admirable gravity, thereby ren- 
dering the imitation doubly picquante to her worthy patroness. 

The causes which had led to the deplorable illness of Miss Crawley, and 
her departure from her brother's house in the country, were of such an 
unromantic nature that they are hardly fit to be explained in this genteel 
and sentimental novel. For how is it possible to hint of a delicate female, 
living in good society, that she ate and drank too much, and that a hot 
supper of lobsters profusely enjoyed at the Bectory was the reason of an 
indisposition which Miss Crawley herself persisted was solely attributable 
to the dampness of the weather ? The attack was so sharp that Matilda — 
as his Beverence expressed it — was very nearly " off the hooks ;" all the 
family was in a fever of expectation regarding the will, and Bawdon 
Crawley was making sure of at least forty thousand pounds before the 
i>ommencement of the London season. Mr. Crawley sent over a choice 
parcel of tracts, to prepare her for the change from Vanity Fair and Park 
Lane for another world; but a good doctor from Southampton being 
called in in time, vanquished the lobster which was so nearly fatal to her, 
and gave her sufficient strength to enable her to return to London. The 
baronet did not disguise his exceeding mortification at the turn which 
affairs took. 

"While everybody was attending on Miss Crawley, and messengers every 
hour from the Bectory were carrying news of her health to the affectionate 
folks there, there was' a lady in another part of the house, being exceedingly 
iU, of whom no one took any notice at all; and this was the lady of 
Crawley herself. The good doctor shook his head after seeing her ; to 
which visit Sir Pitt consented, as it could be paid without a fee ; and she 
was left fading away in her lonely chamber, with no more heed paid to her 
than to a weed in the park. 

The young ladies, too, lost much of the inestimable benefit of their 
governess's instruction. So affectionate a nurse was Miss Sharp, that 
Miss Crawley would take her medicines from no other hand. Firkin had 
been deposed loiig before her mistress's departure from the country, lliat 


faithful attendant found a gloomy oonfiolation on returning to London, in 
seeing Miss Briggs suffer the same pangs of jealousy and undergo the same 
faithless treatment to which she herself had been subject. 

Captain Eawdon got an extension of leave on hk aunt's illness, and 
remained dutifully at home. He was always in her antichamber. (She lay 
sick in the state bed-room, into which you eDteredby the litUe blue saloon). 
His father was always meeting him there ; or if he came down the corridor 
ever so quietly, his father's door was sure to open, and the hy»na face qf 
the old gentleman to glare out. What was it iset one to watch the other 
so ? A generous rividry, no doubt, as to which should be most attentive 
to the dear sufferer in the state bed>room. Eebecca used to come out 
and comfort both of them ; or one or the other of them rather. Both of 
these worthy gentlemen were most anxious to have news of the invalid 
from her little confidential messenger. 

At dinner — to which meal she descended for half an hour — she kept the 
peace between them : after which she disappeared for the night ; when 
Eawdon would ride over to the depot of the 1 50th at Mudbury, leaving 
his Papa to the society of Mr. Horrocks and his rum and water. Sh^ 
passed as weary a fortnight as ever mortal spent in Miss Crawley's sick 
room; but her little nerves seemed to be of iron, and she was quite 
unshaken by the duty and the tedium of the sick-chamber. 

She never told until long afterwards how painful that duty was ; how 
peevish a patient was the jovial old lady ; how angry ; how sleepless ; in 
what horrors of death ; durmg what long nights she lay moaning, and in 
almost delirious agonies respecting that future world which ^e quite 
ignored when she was in good healQi. — Picture to yourself, oh fair young 
reader, a worldly, selfish, graceless, thankless, religionless old woman, 
writhing in pain and fear, and without her wig. Picture her to yourself 
and ere you be old, learn to love and pray ! 

Sharp watched this graceless bedside with indomitable patience. Nothing 
escaped her ; and, like a prudent steward, she found a use for everything. 
She told many a good story about Miss Crawley's illness in after days, — 
stories which made the lady blush through her artificial carnations. During 
the illness she was never out of temper ; always alert ; she slept lights, 
having a perfectly clear conscience ; and could take that refreshment ait 
almost any minute's warning. And so you saw few traces of fatigue in 
her appearance. Her face might be a trifle paler, and the circles roun4 
her eyes a little blacker than usual ; but whenever she came out from the 
sick-room she was always smiling, fresh, and neat, and looked as trim in 
her little dressing^own and cap, as in her smartest evening suit. 

The Captain thought so, and raved about her in uncouth convulsions. 
The barbed shaft of love had penetrated his dull hide. Six weeks — appro- 
pinquity-r— opportunity — had victimised him completely. He made a con- 
fidante of his a>int at the Rectory, of ail persons in the world. She rallied 
him about it ; she had perceived his folly ; she warned him ; she finished 
by owning that little Sharp was the most clever, droll, odd, good-natured, 
simple, loudly creature in England. Eawdon niust not trifle with her 
affections, though — dear Miss Crawley would never pardon him for tiiat ; 
for she, too, was quite overcome by the little governess, and loved Sharp 


like a dauglvtcr. Eawdon must go away-^go back to kis regimemt and 
nanghiy LoBd<Mi, and not play with a poor artless girl's feelings. 

Many and many a time this good-natured lady, compassionating the for- 
lorn life-guardsman's condition, gave him an opportunity of seeing Miss 
Sharp at the Rectory, and of walking home with her, as we haye seen. 
When men of a certain sort, ladies, «re in love, though they see the hook 
and the string, and the whole appar»tas with which they are to be taken, 
they gorge the bait nevertheless — ^they must come to it — they must swallow 
it-^amd are pvesently struck and landed gasping. • Rawdon saw there wa» 
a maailiest intention on Mrs. Bute's part to captivate him with Eebeooa. 
He was not very wise ; but he was a man about town, and had seen 
several seasons. A light dawned upon his dusky soul, as he thouglvt, 
through a speech of Mn. Bute's. 

" Mark my words, Rawdon," she said. " You will have Miss Sharp 
one day for your relation." 

" What relation, — ^my cousin, hey, Mi^s. Bute ? Erancis sweet on her, 
hey P " inquired the waggish officer. 

*' More than that," Mrs. Bute said, with a flash from her blaak eyes. 

**Not Pitt?— He sha'n't have her. The sneak a'n't worthy of her. 
He 's booked to Lady Jane Sheepshanks." 

" You men perceive nothing. You siily, blind creature — ^if anythuiff 
happens to Lady Crawley, Miss Sharp will be your mother-in-law ; and 
that *8 what will happen." 

Bawdon Crawley, Esquire, gave vent to a prodigious whistle, in token <^ 
astoniriifflent at tins .announcement. He couldn't deny it. His father's 
evident liking for Miss Sharp had not escaped him. He knew the old 
g^Ktieman's character weU ; and a more unserupulous old — whyou — he did 
iiot conclude the aentence, but walked home, curhng his moustachios, and 
convinced he had found a clue to Mrs. Bute's mystery. 

** By Jove, it 's too bad," thought Rawdon, " too bad, by Jove ! I do 
believe the woman wants the poor girl to be ruined, m order that she 
shouldn't come into the family as Lady Crawley." 

When he saw Bebecca alone, he rallied her about his father's attachment 
in his graceful way. She flung up her head scornfully, looked him full in 
the feoe, and said, — 

" Well, suppose he is fond of me. I know he is, and others too. You 
don't think I am afraid of him. Captain Crawley ? You don't suppose 
I can't defend my own honour, ssiid the little woman," looking as stately as 
a queen. 

" O, ah, why — give you fair warning — lookout, you know — ^that 's all," 
said the moustaohio-twiddler. 

" You hint at something not honourable, thtai ? " said she, flashing out. 

•• 0--<3bd-— really — ^Miss Eebeooa," the heavy dragoon interposed. 

" Do you suppose I have no feeling of self-respect, because I am po<» 
and friendless, and because rich people have none? Do you think, because 
I am a governess, I have not as much sense, and feeling, and good breed- 
ing as you gontle-foiks in Hampshire ? I'm a Montmorency. Do you 
suppose a Montmorency is not as good as a Crawley ?" 

WhenMss Sharp was agitated, and alluded to her maternal relatives. 


she spoke with eyer so alight a foreign accent, which gave a great charm to 
her dear ringing Yoice. *' No," she continued, kindling as she spoke to 
the Captain ; '* I can endure poverty, but not shame — ^neglect, but not 
insult ; and insult from — ^from y<m*' 

Her feelings gave way, and she burst into tears, 

" Hang it, IMQss ^\ksi^ — ^Rebecca — by Jove — ^upon my soul, I wouldn't 
for a thousand pounds. Stop, Eebecca l" 

She was gone. She drove out- with Miss Crawley that day. It was 
before the latter's illness. At dinner she was unusually brilliant and 
lively ; but she would take no notice of the hints, or the nods, or the 
clumsy expostulations of the humiliated, infatuated guardsman. Skir- 
mishes of this sort passed perpetually during the little campaign — ^tedious 
to relate, and similar in result. The Crawley heavy cavalry was maddened 
by defeat, and routed every day. 

If the baronet of Queen's Crawley had not had the fear of losing his sister's 
legacy before his eyes, he never would have permitted his dear girls to 
lose the educational blessings which their invaluable governess was con- 
ferring upon them. The old house at home seemed a desert without her, 
so useful and pleasant had Bebecca made herself there. Sir Pitt's letters 
were not copied and corrected; his books not made up; his household 
business and manifold schemes neglected, now that his little secretary was 
away. And it was easy to see how necessary such an amanuensis was to 
him, by the tenor and spelling of the numerous letters which he sent to 
her, entreating her and commanding her to return. Almost every day 
brought a frank from the baronet, enclosing the most urgent prayers to 
Beclsy for her return, or conveying pathetic statements to Miss Crawley, 
regarding the neglected state of his daughters' education ; of which docu- 
ments Miss Crawley took very little heed. 

Miss Briggs was not fornu^y dismissed, but her place as companion 
was a sinecure and a derision ; and her company was the fat spaniel in the 
drawing-room, or occasionally the discontented Firkin in the housekeeper's 
closet. Nor, though the old lady would by no means hear of Eebecea's 
departure, was the latter regularly installed in office in Park Lane. like 
many wealthy people, it was Miss Crawley's habit to accept as much 
service as she could get from her inferiors ; and good-naturedly to take 
leave of them when she no longer found them useM. Gratitude amongst 
certain rich folks is scarcely natural or to be thought of. They tdce 
needy people's services as their due. Nor have you, O poor parasite and 
humble hanger-on, much reason to complain 1 Your friendship for Dives 
is about as sincere as the return which it usually gets. It is money 
you love, and not the man ; and were Croesus and his footman to change 
places, you know, you poor rogue, who would have the benefit of your 

Aiid I am not sure, that, in spite of Eebecea's simplicity and activity, 
and gentleness and untiring good humour, the shrewd old London lady, 
upon whom these treasures of friendship were lavished, had not a lurking 
suspicion all the while of her affectionate nurse and friend. It must have 
often crossed Miss Crawley's mind that nobody does anything for nothing. 


If she measured her own feeling towards the world, she must haye been 
pretty well able to gange those of the world towards herself; and perhaps 
«he reflected, that it is the ordinary lot of people to haye no Mends if they 
themselyes care for nobody. 

Well, meanwhile Becky was the greatest comfort and oonyenience to 
her, and she gaye her a couple of new gowns, and an old necklace and 
shawl, and shewed her friendship by abusing all her intimate acquaintances 
to her new confidante (than which there can't be a more touching proof of 
regard), and meditated yaguely some great future benefit — ^to marry her 
perhaps to Clump, the apothecary, or to settle her in some adyantageous 
way of life ; or, at any rate, to send ber back to Queen's Crawley when she 
had done with her, and the full London season had begun. 

When Miss Crawley was oonyalescent and descended to the drawing* 
room, Becky sang to her, and otherwise amused her; when she was 
well enough to £iye out, Becky accompanied her. And amongst the 
driyes which they took, whither, of all places in the world, did Miss 
Crawley's admirable good-nature and friendship actually induce her to 
penetrate, but to Russell Square, Bloomsbury, and the house of John 
Sedley, Esquire. 

Ere that eyent, many notes had passed, as may be imagined, between 
the two dear friends. During the months of Rebecca's stay in Hampshire, 
the eternal friendship had (must it be owned?) suffered considerable 
diminution, and grown so decrepit and feeble with old age as to threaten 
demise altogether. The fact is, both girls had their own real affairs to 
think of: Rebecca her adyance with her employers — ^Amelia her own 
absorbing topic. When the two girls met, and flew into each other's arms 
with that impetuosity which distinguishes the behayiour of young ladies 
towards each other, Rebecca performed her part of the embrace with the 
most perfect briskness and energy. Poor little Amelia blushed as she 
kissed her friend, and thought she had been guilty of something yery like 
coldness towards her. 

Their first interyiew was but a yery short one. Amelia was just ready 
to go out for a walk. Miss Crawley was waiting in her carriage below, 
her people wondering at the locality in which they found themselyes, and 
gazing upon honest Sambo, the black footman of Bloomsbury, as one of 
the queer natiyes of the place. But when Amelia came down with her 
kind smiling looks (Rebecca must introduce her to her friend. Miss Crawley 
was longing to see her, and was too ill to leaye her carriage)^ — ^when, I say, 
Amelia came down, the Park Lane shoulder-knot aristocracy wondered 
more and more that such a thing could come out of Bloomsbury ; and 
Miss Crawley was fairly captiyated by the sweet blushing face of the young 
lady who came forward so timidly and so gracefully to pay her respects to 
the protector of her friend. 

"What a complexion, my dear. What a sweet yoicel '* Miss Crawley 
said, as they droye away westward after the little interyiew. ** My dear 
Sharp, your young friend is charming. Send for her to Park Lane, do 
you hear P " Miss Crawley had a good taste. She liked natural manners 
— a little timidity only set them off. She liked pretty faces near her ; as 
she liked pretty pictures, and nice china. She talked of Ameha with 


r«p€u]» heiS^tif^wm iimm tlutt is^. She BMtttioQed ber to BaiKdoii 
Crawley, ivbo eane .duti&ttty to pMrUke of Us auttt's ehkkeaa thai- day. 

Of eoiune, on ibis Sel^eoea ktstaotly atoted, that Ameliik was engaged to 
be married — to a Lieutenant Osborne — ^a very M, flame. 

'' Is he a fltan in a juke^regkeieikt? *'Captam Crawley asked, lemember- 
ittg aftar aa effort, as baeane a g^uffdswiaii, tibe number of ^ regiment, 
the — ih. 

Sefaecca thought ibat was the resglineot. "The Captain's aame," she 
said, ^' was Captain DobfaiQ." 

** A laxtky, gawky fellow," said Crawley, *'tiHiible» over everybody. I know 
him ; and Osborne's a goodish-lookifig Mow, with kisge black whiskers ? " 

"Enormous/' Mias JBebeoca Sharp said, ''imd enormously proud of 
them, I assure you.** 

Captain Bawdon Crawley burst into a hoarse lai^h by way of r^y^ 
and being pressed by the ladtes to exphiia, did so whcaoi the explosion of 
hilarity was over. " He janoies he «an pky at billiards," said he. '* I 
won two hundred of him at the Coooa Tree. Me play, the young flat ! 
He 'd have phiyed for anyUiing tiiat dn^, b«t his todjii Ci^tain Dobbin 
carried him oflF, hang him ! " 

"Sttwdon, Bawdon, don't be so wicked," Miss Ciawley xmiarked, 
highly pkased. 

" Why, ma'am, of all the young fellows I 've seen out of the line, I think 
this fellow 'a the greenest. Tarquin and Beuoeaoe get what money l^ey 
like out of him. He 'd go to the deuce to be seen with a Lord. He pays 
their dinners at Greenwich, and they invite the company." 

"And very pretty compai^ too, I daoe say." 

'* Quite right. Miss Sharp. Bight, as usual. Miss Sharp. Uncomnaon 
pretty company, — ^haw, haw ! " and the Captain laughed more and more,, 
ihinkbg he had made a good jdee. 

" Bawdon, don't be naughty ! " his aunt exdatmed. 

" Well, his father 's a city man — immensely rich, they say. Hang those 
city fdlows, i^ey must bleed ; and I've not done with him yet, I can tell 
you. Haw, haw ! " 

'' Fie, Captain Crawley ; I shall warn Amdia. A gambling husband ! " 

" Horrid, ain't he, hey?" the Captain said with great solemnity; and 
then added, a sudden thought having struck him : — " Gad, I say, ma'am, 
we'll have him here." 

" Is he a presentable sort of a person P" the aunt inquired. 

"Presentable? — oh, very well-. You wouldn't see any difference," 
Captain Crawley anawered. " Do let's have him, when you b^in to see 
a few people ; and his whatdyecallem — ^his inamorato^-tih, Miss Sharp ; 
that's what you call it — comes. Gad, I'll write him a note, and have him ; 
and I'll try if he can play picquet as well as billiards. Whei e does he live. 
Miss Sharp?" 

Miss Sharp told Crawley the Lieutenant's town address; and a few days 
after this conveirsation, Lieatenaut Osborne received a letter, in Captain 
Bawdon's aehool-boy lumd, and enclosing a note of invitation from Miss 

Bebeocadeapat6faeda]soan.iimtatiion to her dashng Amelia, who, you 


jsay be sine, was ready enough to aceept it wk^ dbe heard that Geoxsge 
was to be of the party. It was arranged that Amelia was to spend tlie 
• momiiig with the ladies of Park Laoe, where aU were very Idnd to her. ' 
Eebecea patrooised her with calm supenority : she was so much the 
cleverer of the two, and her friend so geiile aaad uaassmaifig, that she 
always yielded when anybody chose to commaad, and so took Bebeeca's 
orders with perfect meekness and good humour. Miss Crawley's gracious- 
ness was also remarkable. She continued her raptures about little Amelia, 
talked about her before her face as if she were a doll, or a servant, _ or a 
picture, and admired her ^vith^he most benevolent wonder possible. I 
admire that admiration which the genteel world sometimes extends to the 
commonalty. There is no more agreeable object in life than to. see May 
Fair folks condescending. Miss Crawley's prodigious benevolence rather 
fatigued poor little Amelia, and I am not sure that of the three ladies in 
Park Lane she did not find honest Miss Briggs the most agreeable. She 
sympathised with Briggs as with all neglected or gentle people : she 
wasn't what you call a woman of spirit. 

George came to dinner — a repast en jargon with Csqptain Crawley. 

The great family coach of the Osbornes trassported him to Park 
Lane from EusseU S<pare; where the young laidies, who were not 
themselves invited, and professed the greatest indifference at that slight, 
nevertheless looked at Sir Pitt Crawley's name in the baronetage ; and 
learned eiierytfaing whieh that work had to teach about the Crawley 
family and their pedigree, and the Binkies, their relatives, &c<, kc, 
Eawdon Osawley received George Osborne w^ great ifeamkness and gra- 
ciousness : praised his play at billiards: asked him w^en he would have 
his revenge : was interested about Osborne's regiment : and would have 
proposed picquet to him that very evening, but Miss Crawley absolutely 
forbade m^ gambling in her house ; so Ifliat the youiig Lieutenant's 
purse m^ not lightened by his gallant patron, for that day at least. 
Howe^i%]r,iftffiy laade an engagement for the next, s^newhere : to look at 
a horse that Crawly had to sell, and to try him in the Park ; and to dine 
together, and to pass the evening with some jolly fellows. "That is, if you 're 
not on duty to that pretty Miss Sedley," Crawley said, with a knowing 
wink. ." Monstrous nice gu-1, *pon my honour, though, Osborne," he was 
good enough to add. "Lots of tin, I suppose, eh?" 

Osborne wasn't on duty; he would join Crawley with pleasure : and the 
latter, when they met the next day, praised lus new friend's horseman- 
■ehip— ^as he jnight with perfect honesty — and introduced him to three or 
four young Baten of the first fashion, whose aequaintance immensely elaled 
the eimple young offieer. 

"How 's litile Miss Sharp, by-the-bye," Osbome inquired of his friend 
over their wine, with a dandified aic. " Good'*natured little girl that. 
Dees she suit you well at Uueen's Crawley ? Miss Sedley liked her a 
good deal last year." 

Captain Crawley looked savagely at the Lieutenant out of his little blue 
ey^, and watehed him when he went up to resume his acquaintance with 
the fair governess. Her conduct must have relieved Crawley if there was 
myjesl&wsy in the bosom of that life*gaardaman. 

When the young men went up stairs, and after Osborne's introdactibn to 



Miss Crawley, lie walked up to Eebecca with a patronising, easy swagger. 
He was going to be kind to her and protect her. He would even shake 
hands with her, as a friend of Amelia's; and saying, "Ah, Miss Sharp! 
how-dy-doo P" held out his left hand towards her, expecting that she 
would be quite confounded at the honour. 
Miss Sharp put out her right fore-finger — 

And gave him a little nod, so cool and killing, that Bawdon Crawley, 
watching the operations from the other room, could hardly restrain his 
laughter as he saw the Lieutenant's entire discomfiture ; the start he gave, 
the pause, and the perfect clumsiness with which he at length conde- 
scended to take the finger which was oflfered for his embrace. 

" She 'd beat the devil, by Jove 1" the Captain said, in a rapture • and 
the Lieutenant, by way of beginning the conversation, agreeably asked 
Eebecca how she Hked her new place. 

. " My place?" said Miss Sharp, cooUy, "how kind of you to remind me 
of itl It's a tolerably good place : the wages are pretty good — ^not so 
good as Miss Wirt's, I believe, with your sisters in RusseU Square, How 
axe those young ladies ? — ^not that I ought to ask." 


*' Why not P '* Mr. Osborne said, amazed. 

'* Why, they never condescended to speak to me, or to ask me into their 
house, whilst I was staying with Amelia ; but we poor goyemesses^ you 
know, are used to slights of this sort," 

** My dear Miss Sharp l" Osborne ejacdated. 

" At least in some finmihes/' Bebecca continued. " You can't think 
what a difference there is though. We are not so wealthy in Hampshire 
as you lucky folks of the city. But then I am in a gentleman's &inily— 
good old English stock. I suppose you know Sir Pitt's father refused a 
peerage. And you see how I am treated. I am pretty comfortable. 
Indeed, it is rather a good place. But how very good of you to inquire !" 

Osborne was quite savage. The little Goyemess patronised him and 
perdffl^d him until this young British Lion felt quite uneasy; nor could he 
muster sufficient presence of mind to find a pretext for backing out of this 
most delectable conversation. 

" I thought you liked the City families pretty well," he said haughtily. 

" Last year you mean, when I was fresh from that horrid vulgar school ? 
Of course I did. Doesn't every girl like to come home for the holidays ? 
And how was I to know any better ? But oh, Mr. Osborne, what a dif- 
ference eighteen months' experience makes! — eighteen months spent, 
pardon me for saying so, with gentlemen. As for dear Amelia, she, I 
grant you, is a pearl, and would be charming anywhere. There now, I 
see you are beginning to be in a good humour ; but oh these queer odd 
City people ! And Mr Jos. — ^how is that wonderful Mr. Joseph P " 

" It seems to me you didn't dislike that wonderful Mr. Joseph last year," 
Osborne said kindly. ^ 

" How severe of you ! Well, entre nous, I didn't break my heart about 
him ; yet if he had asked me to do what you mean by your looks (and very 
expressive and kind they are, too), I wouldn't have said no." 

Mr. Osborne gave a look as much as to say, "Indeed, how very 
obliging ! " 

" What an honour to have had you for a brother-in-law, you are think- 
ing? To be sister-in-law to George Osborne, Esquire, son of John 
Osborne, Esquire, son of — ^what was yom- grandpapa, Mr, Osborne P 
Well, don't be angry. You can't help your pedigree, and I quite agree 
with you that I would have married Mi, Joe Sedley ; for could a poor 
penniless girl do better ? Now you know the whole secret. Vm frank 
and open ; and, considering all things, it was very kind of you to allude 
to the circumstance — ^very kind and polite. Amelia dear, Mr. Osborne 
and I were talking about your poor brother Joseph. How is he P " 

Thus was George utterly routed. Not that Eebecca was in the right ; 
but she had managed most sucoessfdlly to put him in the wrong. And he 
now shamefcQly fled, feeling if he stayed another minute, that he would 
have been made to look foolish in the presence of Amelia. 

Though Bebecca had had the better of him, Gteorge was above the mean- 
ness of tale-bearing or revenge upon a lady, — only he could not help de* 
verly confiding to Captain Crawley, next day, some notions of his regarding 
Miss Bebecca — that she was a sharp one, a dangerous one, a desperate 
flirt, &c. ; in all of which opmions Crawley agreed laughingly, and with 
every one of which Miss Bebecca was made acquainted before twenty-four 


hours were over. They added te her original reg»d for Mr. Oihome. 
Her wonnaii's kntinct had toid her, that it wm George who had interrupted 
tihe s«ooeM of h«r Urst lov^-pansage, aad she esteemed hsm aceardmgly. 

** I only just warn you/' he said to Bawdoir Oawley, with a knowing 
look — ^he had bought the horse, and losft w&me soons of guineas alter dinner, 
*' I just warn you — ^I know women, and coumel ywt to been the look-out." 

** Thank you, my boy,** said Crawley, wi4h a look of peeotiar gratitude. 
**Yott're wide awdoe, I see." And George went off, tMnkii^ Crawly 
was qwte right. 

He told Amelia of what he had done, md howhe had coonsettBd Eawdon 
Crawley — a derilish good, strai^t-ferward feUow — to be en las goatd 
agahat that little riy, seheming Eebeoca. 

*• Against wkm ? " Amelia cried. 

•^TouT Mend the Goremess. — Don't look so a«toiiished." 

" O George, what have you done ? ** AmeMa said. For her woman's 
eyes, which Lcrre had made shafp-sighted, had in one iivstant diseorered a 
secret which was inyisible to Miss Crawley, to poor virgin Briggs, and, 
above all, to the stupid peepers of that young whisk«ed prig, Luutenant 

For as Rebecca was shawling her in an u|^r spartment, where these 
two Mends had an opportunity for a little of that secret taMng and con- 
M)iring which forms the delight of fenmle life, Amdia, coming up to 
!Kebecca, and taking her two little hands in hers, said, " Bebecca, I see 
it aU." 

Bebecca kissed her. 

And regarding this delightful secret, not one syllable wfxe was said by 
either of the yonng women. But it was destined to come out before long. 

Some short period afler the above events, and Miss Bebecca Sharp stHl 
remaining at her patroness's house in Park Lane, omt more hatchment 
might have been seen in Great Gaunt Street, figuring amongst the many 
which usually ornament that dismal quarts. It was over Sir !Ktt Crawley's 
house ; but it did not indicaite the worthy baronet's demise. It was a 
feminine hatchment, and indeed a few years back had served as a fim^^ 
con^Hment to Sir Pitt's old mother, the late dowager lady Crawley. Its 
period of service over, the hatchment had come down from the fr(mt of the 
house, and lived in retirement somewhere in the back pr^nises of Sir Pitt's 
mansion. It re-appeared now for poor Bose Dawson. Sir Pitt was a 
widower again. The arms quartered on the shield along with his own were 
not, to be sure, poor Hose's. She had no arms. But the cherubs painted on 
the scutcheon answered as well for her as for Sir Pitt's mother, and Rmurgam 
was written under the coat, fianked by the Crawley Dove and Serpent. 
Arms and Hatehments, Besurgam. — Here is an opportunity for moraliEing! 

Mr. Crawley had tended that otherwise Mendless bed-side. She went out 
of the world strengthened by such words and comfort as he could give her. 
For many years his was the only kindness she ev«r knew ; the only Mend- 
dap that solaced in any way that feeble, lonely soul. Her heart was dead 
long before her body. She had sold it to become Sir Pitt Crawley's wife. 
Mothers and daughters are making the same bargain every day in Vanity 


"Wtien tlM! dnaue took yta^, ker hni^iMai^ was in Londo© attending to 
some of his innumerable schemes, and busy with his endless lawyers. Hr 
had found time, nevertheless, to call often in Park Lame, and to despatch 
naacny notes taBeb^eea^ entreating her, enjoining her, oommonding l^r to 
reftom to her ywuig pt^pils in the countiy, irho were now utterly without 
can^nionskip ^aamg their mother's illness. Btrt liSQss Crawley would 
not hear of ker d^artwe ; for though there was no lady of fksMon in 
London who would desert her friends miore complacently as soon as she 
was tired of their socie^, aiid tlMMigh few tired of them sooner, yet as long 
as her atpoAi^eMi kited hev attachment was prodigioiiv, and she dung 
siiU with the greatest energy to Bebecca. 

Tke news of Lady Crawle/s death provoked no more grief or conmtevt 
tkan mig^ kMne been expseted in Miss Crafwley's ftmiify eirde. ** I 
suppose I most put off my party for the 3rd,** Miss Crawley said ; and 
added, after a pause, " I hope my brother will have the decency not to 
marry again.*' "What a confounded rage Pitt will be in if he does," 
Rawdon remarked, with his usual regard for his elder brother. Rebecca 
said nothing. She seemed by far the gravest and most impressed of the 
family. She left the room before Bawdon went away that day ; but they 
met by chance below, as he was going awt^ after taking leave, and had a 
parley together. 

On the morrow, as Rebecca was gazing from the window, she startled 
Miss Crawley, who was placidly occupied with a IPrench novel, by crying 
out in an alarmed tone, *' Here's Sir Pitt, Ma'am!" and the baronet's 
knock followed this aamouncement. . 

" My dear, 1 can't see him. I won't see ham. Tell Bowls not at 
home, or go down stairs and say I'm too ill to receive any one. My 
nerves really won't bear my brother at this moment;" cried out Miss 
Crawley, and resumed the n&vel. 

** She 's too in to see you, Sii'," Rebecca said, tripping down to Sir 
Pitt, who was preparing to aseend. 

" So much the bett»," Sir Pitt answered. ** I want to see you, Miss 
Becky. Come along a me into the padour," and they entered that apart- 
ment together. 

" I wawnt you badt at Queen's Crawley, Miss," the baronet said, fixing 
his eyes upon ker, and taking oS his black gloves and his hat with its 
great crape hat-band. His eyes had such a strange look, and fixed upon 
her so stedfastly, that Rebecca Sharp began almost to tremble. 

" I hope to come soon," she said in a low voice, " as soon as Miss 
Crawley is better — and return to — to the dear children." 

'' Y^^u'veaaid so theas three months, Bccly/' ribbed Sir Pitt, '*and 
stm you go hanging on to my sist«r» who 'U fling you <M like an o^d ^oe, 
when sfae 's w<we yoa ont. I teB you l»ani yon. I 'm going back to 
the Vuneral. WiU you come back? Yes or no." 

" I daren't — I ditrn't think— it .would be right — ^to be alone — with 3^011, 
Sir," Becky said, seemingly in great agitation. 

" I say agin, I want you," Sir Pitt said, thumping the table. " I 
can't git on without you. I didn't see what it was till you went away. 
The house all goes wrong. It 's not the same place. All my accounts 



has got muddled agin. You must come back. Do come back. Dear 
Becky, do come." 

" Come — as what, SirP" Eebecca gasped out. 

** Come as Lady Crawley, if you like," the baronet said, graining his 
crape hat. " There 1 will that zatusfy you ? Come back and be my wife. 
Your vit vort. Birth be hanged. You 're as good a lady as ever I see. 
You 've got more brains in your little vinger than any baronet's wife in the 
county. Will you come ? Yes or no P " 

" Oh, Sir Pitt ! " Eebecca said, very much moved. 

" Say yes, Becl^," Sir Pitt continued. *' I 'm an old man, but a good 'n. 
I *m good for twenty years. I '11 make you happy, zee if I don't. You 
shall do what you like ; spend what you like ; and 'av it all your own way. 
I '11 make you a zettlement. I '11 do everything reglar. Look year ! " and 
the old man fell down on his knees and leered at her like a satvr. 

Eebecca started back a picture of consternation. Li the course of this 
history we have never seen her lose her presence of mind ; but she did 
now, and wept some of the most genuine tears that ever fell from her 

" Oh, Sir Pitt ! " she said, « Oh, Sir— I— I 'm mafried already." 



VERT reader of a sentimental turn 
(and we desire no other) must have 
been pleased with the tableau with 
which the last act of our little drama 
concluded ; for what can be prettier 
than an image of Love on his knees 
before Beauty? 

But when Love heard that awfiil 
confession from Beauty that she was 
married already, he bounced up from 
his attitude of humility on the car- 
pet, uttering exclamations which 
caused poor little Beauty to be 
more frightened than she was when 
she made her avowal. " Married ! 
you 're joking," the Baronet cried, 
after the first explosion of rage and wonder. " You 're making vun of 
me, Becky. Who'd ever go to marry you without a shilling to your 

" Married I married ! " Bebecca said, in an agony of tears — ^her voice 
choking with emotionj her handkerchief up to her ready eyes, fainting 
against the mantel-piece — a figure of woe fit to melt the most obdurate 
heart. " O Sir Pitt, dear Sir Pitt, do not think me ungrateful for all your 
goodness to me. It is only your generosity that has extorted my secret." 
" G^enerosity be hanged ! Sir Pitt roared out. " Who is it tu, then, 
you 're married ? Where was it ? " 

" Let me come back with you to the country, sir ! Let me watch over 
you as faithfully as ever I Don't, don't separate me from dear Clueen'9 

" The feU^ has left you, has he P " the Baronet said, beginning, as he 
fancied, to comprehend. "Well, Becky— come back if you Hke, You 
can't eat your cake and have it. Any ways I made you a vair oflfer. Coom 
back as governess — ^you shalL have it all your own way." She held out 
one hand. She cried fit to break her heart ; her ringlets fell over her face, 
and over the marble mantel-piece where she laid it. 

** So the rascal ran oflF, eh P " Sir Pitt said, with a hideous attempt at 
consolation. " Never mind, Becky, I'll take care of 'ee." 

" Sir ! it would be the pride of my life to go back to Queen's 
Crawley, and take care of the children, and of you as formerly, when you 
siad you were pleased with the services of your little Bebecca. When I 



tlunk of what you have just offered me, my heart fills with gratitude — 
indeed it does. I can't be your wife, sir; let me— let me be your 

Saying which, Bebecca went down on her knees in a most tragical way, 
and, talmig Sir Pitt's homy black hand between her own two (which were 
very pretty and white, and as soft as sstin), looked up in his face with an 
expression of exquisite pathos and confidence, when — ^when the door 
opened, and Mias Grswky sailed in. 

Mrs. Firkin and Miss Briggs, who happened by chance to be at the 

parlour-4oor soon after the Baronet and Bebecca entered Ihe apartment, 
had also seen accadentally, through the key-hole, the t)ld ^cntteman pros- 
trate before the governess, and had heard the generous proposal which he 
made her. It was scarcely out of his mouth, when Mrs. Fn'kin and Miss 
Briggs had streamed up the stairs, ha^ rushed into the drawing-room where 
Miss Crawley was reading the French novel, and had given that old lady 
the astounding intell^ence that Sir Pitt was on his biees, proposing to 
Miss Sharp. And if you calculate the time for the above diabgue to take 
place — the time for Briggs and Firkin to fly to the drawing-room— the 
time for Miss Cra\dey to be astonished, and to drop hervolume of 'Pjgault 
le Bnm— ^nd the tnne for her to come down istairs — you will^ec how 


eiaetty ttoenrate this biitoiy is, and how Miss Crawky mu»i have appeared 
iat Ike very instant when Bebecca had asBijimed the attitude of humility. 

*MtisiheIady on the 'ground, and not the genilemaai," Miss Grawley 
said, with a lobkandiwice'Of great seom. '^They told me that you were 
on your knees, *^JBitt : do kned once more, and let me see this pretty 

" I have thanked Sir Pitt Crawley, ma'am," Beheoea said, rising, "arid 
have told him that-^that I never ean become Lady Grawley." 

** Eefused him ! " Miss Crawley said, more bewildered thmx • ever. 
Bnggs land Eifckin. at the door opened the eyes of astonishment and the 
lips of wonder. 

^* Tea— H^fused," Bebeoea continued, with a sad, tearful voice. 

"And am I to credit any ears that you absolutdiy proposed to her, Sir 
Pitt ? " the old lady asked. 

" Ees," said the Baroiw*, " I did." 

" And she refosed you as she says ? " 

" Ees," Sir Pitt said, his features oii a broad grin.. 

"It does not seon to break your heart at any rate," Miss Crawley 

"N'awt a Iat," answered Sir Pitt, with a coolness and good-humour 
^Hhich setMjss Crawley almost mad wfthbewiklennent. That an old gen- 
tleman of station ishoidd fall on his knees to apennEass governess, and 
burst out laughing because she reliised to marry ^ him, — that a penniless 
governess should refose a Baronet with four thousand a yearj-^-rthese were 
onysteries which Miss Crawley could never comprehend. It surpassed any 
oomplkationa of intrigue in her favouritef Pigaidt le Bmn. 

"JPm glad you tbmk it good sport, brother," she continued, groping 
wildly through this amazement. 

« Yamous," sadd Sir Pitt. "Who'd ha' thought it ! what a sly Kttle 
devil I what a tittle iox it waws ! " he muttered to himself, chuckling with 

"Who'd have thoughtwhat? " cries Miss Crawley, stamping with her 
ibot. ^* P»ay, Miss Sha|rp, are you • waiting ior the Prince Kegent's 
divoite, that you doa't think our family good enough for you?" 

^* My attitiiule," Bsbecca said, " when you came in, Ma'am, did not look 
-as if I despised such an .honour as this good — this noble man has deigned 
to ofksr me. Do you^ think I have my heart ? • Have you aU loved me, and 
been so kind to the poor orphan — desevtedr-rgirl, and am 7 to feel notldng ? 
.O my fiaends ! O my benefactors ! may not my love, my life, my duty, try 
io repay the confidence you have shown me ? Do you grudge me even 
gsatitude. Miss Gtwmleij? It is too mudi-nmy heart is too fuU ; " and 
&he sank down in a chair so pathetically, that most of the audience present 
were ^perfectly melted.. with her sadness. 

"^Whether you marry me or .not, you're, a good little girl, Becky, and 
I'm yoar vriend^mind," said Sir Pitti^and putting on hds. crape-bound hat, 
ihe walked away^-^^greatly to Eebecca's relief ; for it was evident that her 
secret was vnrevealed to Miss Crawky, and she had the advantage of a 
brief reprieve. 

Puttmg her handkerddef to her eyes, and nodding away honest Briggs, 



who vould hare followed her up-stain, she went up to her apartment i 
while Briggs and Miss Crawley, in a high state of excitement, remained to 
discuss the strange event, and Firkin, not less mored, dived down into the 
kitchen regions, and talked of it with all the male and female company 
there. And so impressed was Mrs. Pirkin with the news, that she thought 
proper to write off by that very night's post, " with her humble duty to 
Mrs. Bute Crawley and the famly at the Bectorv, and Sir Pitt has been and 
proposed for to many Miss Shaip, wherein she has refused him to the 
wonder of all." 

The two ladies in the dining-room (where worthy Miss Briggs was 
delighted to be admitted once more to a confidential conversation with her 
patroness) wondered to their hearts* content at Sir Pitt's offer, and Bebecca's 
refusal ; Briggs very acutely suggesting that there must have been some 
obstacle in the shape of a previous attachment, otherwise no young woman 
in her senses would ever have refused so advantageous a proposal. 

"Tou would have accepted it yourself, wouldn't you, Briggs?" Miss 
Crawley said, kindly. 

** Would it not be a privilege to be Miss Crawley's sister ? " Br^gs 
replied, with meek evasion. 

" Well, Becky would have made a good Lady Crawley, after all," Miss 
Crawley remarked, (who was mollified by the girl's refusal, and very liberal 
and generous now there was no call for her sacrifices.) " She has brains in 
plenty (much more wit in her little finger than you have my poor dear 
Briggs in aU your head.) Her manners are excellent now I have formed 
her. She is a Montmorency, Briggs, and blood is something, though I 
despise it for my part ; and she would have held her own amongst those 
pompous stupid Hampshire people much better than that unfortunate 
ironmonger's daughter." 

Briggs coincided as usual, and the "previous attachment" was then 
discussed in conjectures. "You poor friendless creatures are always 
having some foolish tendre,** Miss Crawley said. "Tou yourself, you 
know, were in love with a writing master (don't cry, Briggs — ^you're 
always crying, and it won't bring him to life again), and I suppose this 
unfortunate Becky has been silly and sentimental too— some apotljbcary, 
or house-steward, or painter, or young curate, or something of that sort.'* 

** Poor thing, poor thing I " skys Briggs (who was thinking of twenty- 
four years back, and that hectic young writing master whose lock of 
yellow hair, and whose letters, beautiful in their OlegibiUty, she cherished 
in her old desk up stairs.) " Poor thing, poor thing ! " says Briggs. 
Once more she was a fresh-cheeked lass of eighteen ; she was at evening 
church and the hectic writing master and she were quavering out of the 
same psalm-book. 

" After such conduct on "Rebecca's part," Miss Crawley said enthusiastic* 
ally, "our family should do something. Find out who is the o^W, 
Briggs. I 'U set him up in a shop ; or order my portrait of him, you 
know ; or speak to my cousin the Bishop — ^and I 'U doter Beclsy, and we'll 
have a wedding, Briggs, and you shall nuake the breakfast, and be a bridea' 

Briggs declared that it would be delightful, and vowed that her dear 


Was Crawley was always kind and generous, and went up to Bebeoca's 
bed-room to console her and prattle about the offer, and the refusal, and 
the cause thereof; and to hint at the generous intentions of Miss Crawley, 
and to find out who was the gentleman that had the mastery of Miss 
Sharp's heart, 

Eebecca was very kind, very affectionate and affected — responded to 
Bnggs' offers of tenderness with grateful fervour— owned there was a 
secret attachment — a delicious mystery — ^what a pity Miss Briggs had not 
remained half a minute longer at the key-hole I Eebecca might, perhaps, 
have told more : but five minutes after Miss Briggs' arrival in Bebecca'a 
apartment, Miss Crawley actually made her appearance there — ^an unheard 
of honour; — ^her impatience had overcome her ; she could not wait for the 
tardy operations of her ambassadress : so she came in person, and ordered 
Briggs out of the room. And expressing her approval of Bebecca's con* 
duct, she asked particulars of the interview and the previous transactions 
which had brought about the astonishing offer of Sir Pitt. 

Eebecca said she had long had some notion of the partiality with 
which Sir Pitt honoured her, (for he was in the habit of malonghis feelings 
known in a very frank and unreserved manner) but, not to mention private 
reasons with which she would not for the present trouble Miss Crawley, 
Sir Pitt's age, station, and habits were such as to render a marriage quite 
impossible ; and could a woman with any feeling of self-respect and any 
decency listen to proposals at such a moment, when the funeral of the 
lover's deceased wife had not actually taken place P 

" Nonsense, my dear, you would never have refused him had there not 
been some one eke in the case," Miss Crawley said, coming to her point 
at once. " Tell me the private reasons ; what are the private reasons ? 
There is some one ; who is it that has touched your heart P" 

Eebecca cast down her eyes, and owned there was. '* You have guessed 
right, dear Lady," she said with a sweet simple faltering voice, " You 
wonder at one so poor and friendless having an attachment, don't you P 
I have never heard that poverty was any safeguard against it^ I wish it 
were." ' 

" My poor dear child," cried Miss Crawley, who was always quite ready 
to be sentimental, " Is our passion unrequited, thenP Are we pining 
in secret ? Tell me all, and let me console you.'* 

^' I wish you could, dear Madam," Eebecca said in the same tearful 
tone. *' Indeed, indeed I need it." And she laid her head upon Miss 
Crawley's shoulder and wept there so naturally that the old lady, surprised 
into sympathy, embraced her with an almost maternal kindness, uttered 
many soothing protests of regard and affection for her, vowed that she 
loved her as a daughter, and would do everything in her power to serve 
her. And now who is it, my dearP Is it that pretty Miss Sedley's 
brother P You said something about an affair with him, I'll ask Mm 
here, my dear. And you shall have him : indeed you shall." 

" Don't ask me now," Eebecca said, " You shall biow all soon. Indeed 
you shall. Dear land Miss Crawley — ^Dear friend, may I sav so P " 

" That you may, my child," the old lady replied, kissing her, 

''I cant tell you now," sobbed out Eebecca, "I am very miserable. 


But O I love me ahraya-^proaiifle yon will love mealwaji." Andiii/tlift 
midst of muttinl tears — for the emotions of ike younger utomu had 
awakened the sympatliies of tlie ekkr^^tbis promise was saifflustf 
given by Miss Crawley, who left her little protegee, blessa^ and admir^^ 
ing her as a dear, artless, tender-hearted, affectionate, incoatipMiheBB&le' 

And now she was left alone to think over the sudden and wohdeifuL 
events of the day, and of what had been and what might have: been^ 
What think you were the private fedings of Ifiss, no, (b^gm^ her pardon) 
of Mrs. Hebeeca? li, a- few pages back, the present writer daimed 
the privilege of peeping into Mbs Amelia Sedley's bedrroom, aiidimdBr> 
standing with the omniscience of the novelkt all the gentle pains and 
passions which vi^ere tossing upon that innocent pillow^ why i^oaldho 
not declare himself to be Bebecoa's confidante too, master of her secrets, 
and seal-keeper of that yo\mg woman's conscience ? 

Well then, in the first place, Bebecca gave way to s<»ne veiy sinocxv 
and touching regrets that a piece of marvellous good foitune should have 
been so near her, and she actually obliged to decline it. In this natund 
emotion every properly regulated mind will certainly share. What good 
mother is there that would not commiserate a penniless spinsteiv who 
might have been my lady, and have shared four thousand a year ? What 
well-bred young person is there in all Vaniiy Fair, who wiU not fed for a 
hard-worlang, ingenious, meritorious girl, who gets such an honouraUie, 
advantageous, provoking offer, just at the very moment when it is -out 'of 
her power to accept it? I am sure our friend Bediy's disH^spcHntment 
deserves and will' command every sympathy. 

I remember on<^ night being in the Fair myself, at an evening party* 
I observed old Miss Toady there also present, smgle out for herspecnl 
attentions and flattery Httle Mrs. Briefless, the barrister's wife, who 
is of a good family certainly, but, as we all know^ is as poor as poor 
can be. 

What, I asked in: my own mind, can cause this obsequiousnesa onihe 
part of Miss Toady ; has Briefless got a county court, or has his wife had 
a fortune left her ? Miss Toady expkiined presei^ly, with that simplicity 
which distinguishes all her conduct-. * You know, she said, Mjrs; Bn^ess 
is granddaughter of Sir John Eedhand, who is so ill at Cheltenham thai; 
he can't last six months. Mrs. Briefless's papa, succeeds ; so you see she 
will be a baronet's daughter.' And Toady asked Briefless and his wifeto 
dinner the very next week. 

If the mere chance of becoming a baronet's daughter can proems a lady- 
such homage iii the world, surely, surely we may respect the agonies of a 
young woman who has lost the opportunity of becoming a baronet's wife* 
Who would have dreamed of Lady Crawley dying so soonf She was 
one of those sickly women that might have lasted these ten years — ^Bebeooa 
thought to herself, in all the woes of repentance — and I might have 
been my lady ! I might have led that old man whither I would, I might 
have thanked Mrs. Bute for her patronage, and Mr. PitI for his insufferaUe 
condescension. I would have had the town-house newly fumisfafid and 
decorated. I woulti have had the handsomest carriage in Ix)ndaa« and a 


box at the OpMA; and I would hare baen pveamied nait aaaamu All- 
this might have been ; but now — ^now all was doubt and mysteiy. 

Bat Bebecca was a yoang lady o£ too mnish reaolution asd enei^of 
character to- peonii hmself mudi uselees and lutseemlj somMF for the 
icrevooable past ; so, having devoted only the proper portion of regret to 
it, ahe wisely turned her whole attention towards the future, whidi was. 
now vastly more important to her. And she surveyed her poeition, and 
its hopes, doubts, and chances. 

In the first place, she was married ; — that was a great fact. Sir Pitt 
knew it^ She was not so much surprised into the avowal^ as imdneed to 
make it by a sudden calculation. It must have come some day ; and why 
not now as at a later period ? He who would have married iier himseif 
mnat at least be silent with regard to her marriage. But how Miss 
€rawley would bear the news-^was the great queetioo. MisgiviiigiB 
Eebecca had ; but she remembered all Miss Crawley had said ; the old 
lady's avowed contempt for birth; her daring liberal opinions; her general 
romantic propensities ; her almost doting attachment to her nephew, and 
her repeatedly-expressed fondness for Eebecca herself. She is so fond of 
him, Eebecca thought, that she will forgive him anything : she is so used 
to me that I don't think she could be comfortable without me : when 
the eclaircissemefU comes there will be a scene, and hysterics, and a great 
quarrel, and then a great reconciliation^ At aU events, what use was 
there in delaying ? the die was thrown, and now or to-morrow the issue 
must be the same. And so, resolved that Miss Crawley should have the 
news, the young person debated in'her mind as to the best means of 
conveying it to her ; and whether she should face the storm that must 
come, or fly and aroid it until its first fury was blown over. In this state 
of meditation she wrote the following letters — 

Dearest Eriimd, — The great crisis which we have debated about so 
often is come. Half of my secret is known, and I have thought and 
thought, until I am quite sure that now is the time, to reveal the whole of 
the mystery. Sir Pitt came to me this morning, and made — ^what do you 
think ? — a declaration in form. Think of that I Po(W little me. I might 
have been lady Crawley. How pleased Mrs. Bute would have been ; and 
ma tante if I had taken precedence of her ! I might have been somebody's 
mamma, instead of — O, I tremble, I tremble, wlien I think how soon we 
must tell all ! — 

Sir Pitt knows I am married, and not knowing to whom, is not very 
much displeased as yet. Ma tante is actudU/y angry that I should have 
refused hun. But she is all kindness and graciousness. She condescends 
to say I would have made him a good wife ; and vows that she will be a 
mother to your little Eebecca. She will be shaken when she first hears 
the news. But need we fear anything beyond a momentary anger ? I 
think not : / am sure not. She dotes upon you so (you naughty, good- 
for-nothing man), that she would pardon you anything: and, indeed, 
I believe, the next place in her heajrt is mine : and that she would be 
miserable without me. Dearest ! something tells me we shall conquer. 
You shall leave that odious regiment : quit gaming, racing, and be a good 



boy ; and we shall all live in Park Lane : and ma tanie shall leare ua dl 
her money. 

I shall try and walk to-morrow at 3 in the nsual place. If Miss B. 
accompanies me, you must come to dinner, and bring an answer, and put 
it in the third volume of Forteus's Sermons. But, at all events, come to 
your own. IL 

To Miss Eliza Styles, 

At Mr. Bamet's, Saddler, Knigfatsbridge. 

And I trust there is no reader of this little story who has not discern* 
ment enough to peroeiye that the Miss Eliza Styles (an old schoolfellow, 
Bebecca said, with whom she had resumed an active correspondence of 
late) and who used to fetch these letters from the . saddler's, wore brass 
spurs, and large curling mustachios, and was indeed no other than 
Captain Bawdon Crawley. 



OW they were married is not of 
the slightest consequence to Any 
body. What is to hinder a Captain 
who is a major, and a young lady 
who is of age, from purchasing a 
license, and uniting themselyes at 
any church in this townP Who 
needs to be told, that if a woman 
has a will, she will assuredly find 
a way ? — ^My belief is, that one 
day, when Miss Sharp had gone 
to pass the forenoon with her 
dear friend Miss Amelia Sedley, 
in Eussell-square, a lady very like 
her imight have been seen enter- 
ing a church in the city, in com- 
pany with a gentleman with dyed 
mustachoes, who, after a quarter 
of an hour's interval, escorted her 
back to the hackney-coach in 
waiting, and that this was a quiet 
bridal party. 

And who on eardi, after the daily experience we have, can question the 
probability of a gentleman marrying any body P How many of the wise 
and learned have married their cooks ? Did not lord Eldon himself, the 
most prudent of men, make a run-away match? Were not Achilles and 
Ajax both in love with their senrant maids? And ate we to expect a 
heavy dragoon with strong desires and small brains, who had never con- 
trolled a passion in his life, to become prudent all of a sudden, and to 
refuse to pay any price for an indulgence to which he had a mind ? If 
people only made prudent marriages, what a stop to population there 
would be ! 

It se^ns to me, for my part, that Mr. Eawdon's marriage was one of 
the honestest actions which we shall have to record in any portion of that 
gentleman's biography whidi has to do with the present history* No one 
will say it is unmanly to be captivated by a woman, or, being captivated, 
to marry her ; and the admiration, the delight, the passion, the wonder, 
the imbounded confidence, and frantic adoration with which, by degrees, 
this big warrior got to regard the little Eebecca, were feelings which the 
ladies at least will pronounce were not altogether discreditable to him. 


When she sang, every note thrilled in his dull soul, and tingled through 
his huge frame. When she spoke, he brought all the force of his brains 
to listen and wonder. If she was jocular, he used to revolve her jokes in 
his mind, and explode over them half an hour afterwards in the street, 
to the surprise of the groom. in the tilbury by his side, or th^ comrade 
riding with him in Botten Bow. Her words were oracles to him, her 
smallest actions marked by an infallible grace and wisdom. '' How she 
sings, — ^how she paints," thought he. ** How she rode that kicking mare 
at Queen's Crawley 1 " And he would say to her in eonMential moments, 
" By J(we, BedL, you're fit to be Commander-in-Chief, or ArchMshop of 
Ganterbury, by Jove." Is his case a rare one P and don't we see every 
day in the- world many an honest Hercules at the apron-strings of Omphale, 
and great wluskfired Samsons prostrate in Dalilah's li^ ? 

When, then, Eeckey t<dd him that the great crisis was near, and the 
tima for aotion had arrived, Bawdon expressed himself as ready to act 
undsr her oeders, as he would be to charge with his troop at the command 
of his ook>nelr There was no need for hun to put his letter into the third 
vofaune o[ Porteus. Bebecca easily foond a means to get rid of Br^gs, 
her companion, and met hex faithful friend in " the usual place" on the next 
day. She had thought over matters at night, and ocMnmunicated to Baw- 
don the result of her determinations. He agreed, of course, to every 
thing ; was quite sure that it was aU right ; that what she pimposed was 
best ; that Ifiss Crawley would infallibly relent, or '* come round," as he 
said, after a tinie. Had Bebecca's resolutions been entirely different, he 
woidd have £oUdwed them as implicitly. *^ You have head enough for 
both' of ua. Beck;" said he. " You're sure to get us out of the scrape. I 
never saw your equal, and I've met with some clippers in my time too." 
And with this sknpie confession of faith, the love-sicken dragoon left her 
to execute his part of the project which she had formed £or the pair. 

It ooDsiaied simply in the hiring of quiet lodgings at Brbmpton, or in 
the neighbourhood of the barradcs, for Captain and Mrs. Crawley. For 
Bebecca had determined, and very prudently, we think, to Ay. BAmbn 
wad only too happy at her resolve ; he had been enixeating her to take this 
measure imy time for weeks past* He psanoed off to engage the lodginga 
with all the impetuosity of love. He agreed to pay two guineas^ week so 
readily, that the Lmdlady regretted ^ had asked hmi; so little.: He- 
ordered in a piano, and half a nursery boose full of jSowers, and a heap o£ 
good things. As for shawls, kid gloves, silk stockings, gold Ekiauli> 
watches, bsaoelets and perfumery, he sent them in with the ppoftusioa- oi: 
blind love and unbounded credit. And having relieved his mmdiby this 
outpouring of generosity, he went and dined nervously at the club, waiting 
untE the great moment of his life ahouJd coane. 

The occurrences of the jvevious day ; the admirable conduct of Bebecca 
in raising an oiGer so advantageous to her, the secret unhappinflss pceying 
upon her, the sweeti^ss and silence with which she bore: her affictioo, 
made Miss Ciawky much more tender than usuaL An event of thia: 
natare, a maiziage, or a re&sal, or a proposal, thr^ throng. a whaJe. 
houaafttLof womn, and sets all thledi hysteneal sympathim at work. Aa 


an obsonrer of bmnaaB^ naiiic, I regularly frequent' Si. Greovge's, HanoTer 
Square) darng the genteel manriage eeaaoni ; and thongk I bare never seen 
the bridegroQan's nuJe frienda give waj ta tcart, or the beadks and offioi* 
ating elei'gy anjr way ajOBscted, yet it is not at all unoomnKML to see women 
who are not in the least concerned in the operations going on — dd ladies 
who are long past marrying, stout middle-aged females wiUi plenty of soBa< 
and danghtersy let alone pvetty young creatures in pink bonnets, who are 
on their proootion, and may naturally take an intcrestin the ceremony, — ^I 
say it is quite common to see the women present piping, sobbing, sniffling:, 
hiding their httk faces in their little usdess podEet^handkerchiefs, and 
heaving old andyoQiig wi^. emotion. When myvfiaend, the £E»hionablB 
John Pindioo, maaied .the lovely Lady Belgravia Green Parker, the emo- 
tion was «o general^' that even the little snu^ old pew-opener who let me 
into the seat^ was in tearsi And wherefore ? I enquimd of my own soul : 
^he was not going to be married. 

Misa Graii4eyand Svtggs in a word, after the affair of Sir Pitt, indulged 
in the utmost luxury of sentiment, and Bebecca became an object of the 
most tender int^est to them. In her absence Miss Crawley solaced hfir« 
self with the most sentimental of the novels in her library. Little Sharpy 
with her secret griefs, was the heroine of the day. 

That night Sebeceasang more sweetfy and talked more pleasantly than 
she had ever been heard to do in Ptok Lane. She twined herself round 
the heart of Miss Crawley* She spoke lightly and laughingly of Sir Pitt's 
prc^osal, ridiculed it as thefoolish fancy of an old man ; and her eyes filled 
with tears, and Btfiggs-s heart with unutterable pangs of defeat, as she 
said she desired no other lot than to remain for ever with her dear bene- 
factress. '* My dear little: creature," the old lady said, '' I don't intotd to> 
let you stir for years, that you may depend upon it. As fm: going hads. 
to that odious brother of mine after what has passed, it is out of the ques- 
tion. Here you stay with me and Briggs. Briggs wants to go to see 
her relations very often. Briggs, you may go when you like. Bat as for 
you, my dear, you mmst stay and take care^ the old woman/' 

If Eawdon Crawley had been then and there present, instead of beings 
at the dub nervoosly drinking claret, the pair might have gone down on. 
their knees bt^oare the oM spinster, avowed all, and been forgiven in a 
twinkling. But that good chance was denied to the young couple, doubt- 
less in order that this stoiy might be written, in which numbers of their 
wonderful adventures are narrated — adventures which could never have 
occurred to them if they had been housed and sheltered under the com* 
fortable iminteresting f(»rgiveness of Miss Crawley. 

Under Mrs. Ebkin's orders, in the Park Lane estabHslundfit, was a youngs 
woman from Hampshire, whose business it was, among other duties, to 
knodc at Miss Sharp's do<Nr with that jug of hot water, which £^kin> 
would rather have perished than have presented to the intruder. T\m 
girl, bred on the family estate, had a brother in Captain Crawley's troop, 
and if the truth were known, I daresay it would come out that she was 
aware of certain arrmgements, which have a great deal io do with this 
history. At any rate she pun^ased a yellow shawl, a pair of green boots. 


and a light blue hat with a red feather, with three guineas which Bebeoea 
gave her, and as little Sharp was by no means too liberal with her money, 
no doubt it was for services rendered that Betty Martin was so bribed. 

On the second day after Sir Pitt Crawley's offer to Miss Sharp, the saxk 
rose as usual* and at the usual hour Betty Martin, the upstairs maid, 
knocked at the door of the goyemess's bed-chamber. 

No answer was returned, and she knocked again. Silence was still 
uninterrupted ; and Betty, with the hot water, opened the door and en* 
tered the chamber. 

The little white dimity bed was as smooth and trim as on the day previous 
when Betty's own hands had helped to make it. Two little trunks were 
corded in one end of the room ; and on the table before the window — on 
the pincushion — ^the great fat pincushion lined with pink ioside, and twilled 
like a lady's nightcap — ^lay a letter. It had been reposing there probably 
all night. 

Betty advanced towards it on tiptoe, as if she were afraid to awake it — 
looked at it, and round the room with an air of great wonder and satisfac- 
tion, took up the letter, and grinned intensely as she turned it round and 
over, and finally carried it in to Miss Briggs's room below. 

How could Betty tell that the letter was for Miss Briggs, I should like 
to know ? All the schooling Betty had was at Mrs. Bute Crawley's Sun- 
day School, and she could no more read writing than Hebrew. 

" La, Miss Briggs," the girl exclaimed, " O, Miss, something must have 
happened — ^there's nobody in Miss Sharp's room; the bed aint been slep 
in, and she 've run away, and left this letter for you, Miss." 

" JFkat / " cries Briggs, dropping her comb, the thin wisp of faded 
hair falling over her. shoulders ; '* an elopement ! Miss Sharp a fugitive I 
What, what is this ? " and she eagerly broke the neat seal, and, as they 
say, " devoured the contents " of the letter addressed to her. 

*' Dear Miss Briggs," the refugee wrote, " the kindest heart in the world 
as yours is, will pity and sympathise with me and excuse me. With tears, 
and prayers, and blessings, I leave the home where the poor orphan has 
ever met with kindness and affection. Claims even superior to* those 
of my benefactress call me hence. I go to my duty — ^to my husband. Yes, 
I am married. My husband conwumds me to seek the humble home which 
we call ours. Dearest Miss Briggs, break the news as your delicate sym* 
pathy will know how to do it — ^to my dear, my beloved friend and bene- 
Dstctress. Tell her, ere I went, I shed tears on her dear pillow — ^that pillow 
that I have so often soothed in sickness — ^that I long a^ain to watch — Oh, 
with what joy shall I return to dear Park Lane ! How I tremble for the 
answer which is to seal my fate / When Sir Pitt deigned to offer me his 
hand, an honour of which my beloved Miss Crawley said I was deserving, 
(my blessings go with her for judging the poor orphan worthy to be her 
sister I), I told Sir Pitt that I was oS/ready a wife. Even he forgave me. 
But my courage failed me, when I should have told him all — ^that I could not 
be his wife, for I was his daughter / I am wedded to the best and most gene- 
rous of men — ^Miss Crawley's Bawdon is my Eawdon. At his command I 
open my lips, and foUow hun to our humble home, as I would through thet 

^ /r r X V^ ^Vg: /^e> C'^y/^y^^j^/fw/t 


foorld. O, my excellent and kind friend, intercede with my Bawdon's 
belored amit for him and the poor girl to whom aU Am noble race have 
shown such unparalleled ajf^Hwn, Ask Miss Crawley to receiye her cTwU 
dren, I can say no more, but blessings, blessings on all in the dear house 
I leave, prays 

<( Your affectionate and ^rai^, 
" Midnight." " Kbbbcca Ceawlby." 

Just as Bxiggs had finished reading this affecting and interesting docu* 
ment, which reinstated her in her position as first confidante of Miss Craw* 
ley, Mrs. Pirkin entered the room. " Here 's Mrs. Bute Crawley just 
arrived by the mail from Hampshire, and wants some tea, will you come 
down and make breakfast, Miss ? " 

And to the surprise of Firkin, clasping her dressing-gown around her, 
the wisp of hair floating dishevelled behind her, the little curl-papers still 
sticking in bunches round her forehead, Briggs sailed down to Mrs. Bute 
with the letter in her hand containing the wonderful news. 

" Oh, Mrs. Firkin," gasped Betty, " sech a business. Miss Sharp 
have a gond'and run away with the Capting, and they're off to Gretny 
Green 1 We would devote a chapter to describe the emotions of Mrs« 
Firkin, did not the passions of her mistresses occupy our genteeler muse. 

When Mrs. Bute Crawley, numbed with midnight travelling, and warm- 
ing herself at the newly crackling parlour fire, heard from Miss Briggs the 
intelligence of the clandestine marriage, she declared it was quite provi- 
dential that she should have arrived at such a time to assist poor dear 
Miss Crawley in supporting the shock — ^that Bebecca was an artful little 
hussy of whom she had always had her suspicions; and that as for 
Bawdon Crawley, she never could accoimt for his aunt's infatuation regard- 
ing him, and had long considered him a profligate, lost, and abandoned 
being. And this awM conduct, Mrs. Bute said, will have at least this 
good effect, it will open poor dear Miss Crawley's eyes to the real cha- 
racter of this wicked man. Then Mrs. Bute had a comfortable hot toast 
and tea ; and as there was a vacant room in the house now, there was 
no need for her to remain at the Gloster Coffee House where the Portsmouth 
mail had set her down, and whence she ordered Mr. Bowls*s aide-de-camp 
the footman to bring away her trunks. 

Miss Crawley, be it known, did not leave her room until near noon- 
taking chocolate in bed in the morning, while Becky Sharp read the 
Morning Post to her, or otherwise amusing herself or dawdling. The 
conspirators below agreed that they would spare the dear lady's feeUnga 
until she appeared in her drawing-room : meanwhile it was announced to 
her, that Mrs. Bute Crawley had come up from Hampshire by the mail, 
was staying at the Gloster, sent her love to Miss Crawley, and asked for 
breakfast with Miss Briggs. The arrival of Mrs. Bute, which would not 
have caused any extreme deUght at another period, was hailed with plea- 
sure now ; Miss Crawley being pleased at the notion of a gossip with her 
sister-in-law regarding the late Lady Crawley, the funerid arrangements 
pending, and Sir Pitt's abrupt proposals to Bebecca, 

1142 yjumr j'ais. 

It «wa8 not mtil iSkt old lad^r^was fanij' OMoonoed in her usual aKm- 
dudr in the diswing-ioom, and the prelimmaiy embraces and incpzines 
hadt taken plaee between the kdies, that, the oonspirtttova thon^t it advis- 
Md to submit her to the operotien. Who has not admired tilie artifiees 
and delicate approaches with which women ''prepare" their friends for 
bad news? luss Grawle^r's two.finendamade such an apparatus of mys- 
tery before they l»oke the intelligence to her, that they wodced her up to 
the necessary degree of doubt and alarm. 

** And she refused Sir Fitt, my dear dear llks Crswley, prepare 3rour- 
self for it," Mrs. Bute said, '' beeanse-^beoaase she couldn't help> henc^.^ 

** Of ootrse there ipas a reaeon," Miss Crawley aaawend. ^< 8he liked 
somebody dse. I tohi Briggs so 3Fest«rday." 

" Likes somebody else 1 " Briggs gasped. '^ O my dear finend, she is 

'* Married abready," Mrs. Bute chimed in ; and both aate "wdthitdasped 
hands lookhig ^rom each other at their idotim. 

" Send her to me, the instant she oomes in. The Mtile sly wretdb : how 
dared she not tell me ? *' cried out Miss Crawley, 

*' She won't oome in soon. Prqiare yoaisdf, dear frien^'-she ^ gone 
out for a long time — she 's-^he 's gone altogetW." 

" Graoious goodness, and who 's to make my chooolate? 8«iid for * her 
and have her back ; I desire that she come back," the old lady said. 

*' She decamped last night, Ma'am," cried libs. B^te. 

*' She left n letter for me," Brigga exchomed. ''Shea's mairiedi to^" 

"Prepare her, for heaven's s^e. Don't torture hor, nrr dear Miss 

** She 's married to whom f " criea th^ qiinstor m a ner?ioua^liny. 

" To^4o a relation of ". 

'*^he refused Shr ¥iU," cried ^ victim. ** Speak . at onee. Xkn't 
drive me mad." 

"O Ma'am — ^prepare her, Miss Briggs — she's married to B«wdoa 

''Bawdon married-^Bebecoar-^govemess— *nobod<-*^l«t out of Tiiy 
house, you fool, you idiot — ^you stupid old Brigg8--^ow dare you ? 
Yon 're in the plot — you Inade him marry, tfamkmg that I'd leave my 
money from him — you did, Martha," the poor old kdy soreamed m 
hysteric sentences. 

'*I, Ma'am, ask a member of this family to manr a drswine^-master's 

*' Her mother was a Montmorency," cried out the old la^, pi^lting at 
the bell with all her might. 

** Her mother -was an opcsra girl, and she has been on the stage or 
worse herself," said Mrs. Bate. 

Miss' Crawley gave a :final scream, and foU bade in a faint. ^Tbfj w^re 
forced to take her bade to the '■ room whidi sh& had just quitted. One fit 
of hysterics soeceeded another. -The doctor was sent for — the apothecary 
arrived. ^Mrs.iBute took up the post of nurse l^ her bedside. ''Her 
relations ought to^be round about her," that amiable woman said. 

She had scarcely been carried up to her room, when a new p^FSon 


arrived to whom it was also necessary to break the news. This was Sir 
Pitt. "Where's Becky?" he said, coming in. "Where's her traps? 
She 's coming with me to Queen's Crawley." 

" Have you not heard the astonishing intelligence regarding her surrep- 
titions union ? " Briggs asked. 

" What 's that to me ? " Sir Ktt asked. " I know she 's married. That 
makes no odds. Tell her to come down at once, and not keep me." 

" Are you not aware, Sir," Miss Briggs asked, ** that she has left our 
foof, to die digmaj of Miss Crawky,. who is nearly killed by the intelli- 
|[CBioe <»f Captain JUwdon's union with her ? " « 

When Sir Pitt Crawley heard that Bebeoca was married to his son, he 
broke out into a fiiry of language, which it would do no good to repeat in 
thia plaoe^as' indeed it sent poor Briggs shuddering out of the room ; and 
with her we wiU shut the door upon the figure of the &enzied<^old man, 
wild ifrith hatred and insane with baffled desire. 

One day aiPter he went to 4lueen's Crawley, he burst like a madman 
iaU> the. room ^e had used wheaa. there— ^dashed open her boxes with his 
loot, and^ung about her papers^ clothes, and other relies. Miss Horrocks, 
thetbutler'a daughter, took some <^ them. The children dressed them- 
sdtvea and acted plays in the others. It was but a few days after the 
poor modier had^gone to her lonely buiying-^place -, and was Md, unwept 
and disregarded,; in a vault full of stsangers. 

*^ Stt]^XMe th^ dd lady doesn't oome to," Bawdon said to his little wife, 
as they aaie t^ether in the sni^ little Brompton lodgings. She had been 
trying the new piano all ike morning. The new gloves fitted her to a 
jnoety ; 4he new. shawls beoame her w^nderfuliy ; the new ringts glittered on 
her liiile hands, and the new watch ticked at her waist; "suppose she 
doa't oome rowid, eh, Becky ? " 

"I'U make your fortime," she said; mid Dalilah patted Samson's 

^'Yqm can do anything," he said, kissing the little hand. "By Jove, 
you can ; and we '11 drive down to the Star and Garter, and dine, by Jove." 



F there is any exMbition in all Vanity Fair whick 
Satire and Sentiment can visit arm in arm td* 
gether; where you light on the strangest con- 
trasts laughable and tearful : where you may be 
gentle and pathetic, or savage and cynical with 
perfect propriety : it is at one of those public 
assemblies, a crowd of which are advertised every 
day in the last page of the Times newspaper, 
and over which the late Mr. George Eobins used 
to preside with so much dignity. There are 
very few London people, as I fancy, who have 
not attended at these meetings, and all with a 
taste for moralizing must have thought, with a 
sensation and interest not a little startling and 
queer, of the day when their turn shall come too, and Mr. Hammerdown 
will sell by the orders of Diogenes's assignees, or will be instructed by 
the executors, to offer to public competition, the library, furniture, plate, 
wardrobe, and choice cellar of wines of Epicurus deceased. 

Even with the most selfish disposition, the Vanity-fairian, a# he wit- 
nesses this sordid part of the obsequies of a departed friend, can't but feel 
some sympathies and regret. My Lord Dives's remains are in the family 
vault : the statuaries are cutting an inscription veraciously commemorating 
his virtues, and the sorrows of his heir, who is disposing of his goods. 
What guest at Dives's table can pass the familiar house without a sigh'?-— 
the familiar house of which the lights use to shine so cheerfully at seven 
o'clock, of which the hall-doors opened so readily, of which the obsequious 
servants, as you passed up the comfortable stair, sounded your name from 
landing to landing, until it reached the apartment where jolly old Dives 
welcomed his ftiends ! What a number of them he had ; and what a 
noble way of entertaining them. How witty people used to be here who 
were morose when they got out of the door ; and how courteous and 
friendly men who slandered and hated each other every where else ! He was 
pompous, but with such a cook what would one not swallow P he was rath^ 
dull, perhaps, but would not such wine make any conversation pleasant P 
We must get some of his Burgundy at any price, the mourners cny at bis 
club. " I got this box at old Dives's sale," Pincher says, handing it round, 
*' one of Louis XV.'s mistresses — ^pretty thing, is it not — sweet miniature,'* 
and they talk of the way in which young Dives is dissipating his fortune. 
How changed the house is, though ! The front is patched over with 
bills, setting forth the particulars of the furniture in staring capitals. They 
have hung a shred of carpet out of an upstairs window — a half dozen of 


j^crt^rs aro kHiagiiigouihe diriy si^Mk-4ke laaU swam& witk diagy goesia 
of oriental countenaaee, who thrust printed cards into you hand, and offer 
to bid. (M wotten mi amateurs hay« iuvaded the upper i^partmenis, 
piHt^ng the bed curtains^ poldag iikto the feathers^ shsB^ookig the mat-^ 
tiesaee, and ckpfHng the wardrobe drawers to and fxo. £sterpriaiDg youag 
housekeepeni are measuriog the lookiag glasses and haagiiigs to see tf they 
will suit the new manage. — (Snob will brag for years that he has purchased 
this or that at Dives's sale,) and Mr. Hanunerdown is sitting on the great 
mahogany dining-tables, in the dining-room below, waving the ivory 
hammer, and employing all the artifices of eloquence, enthusiasm, entreaty, 
reason, despair ; shouting to his people ; satirizing Mr. Davids for his 
sluggishness ; inspiriting Mrs. Moaa oto action ; imploring, commanding, 
bellowing, until down comes the huBBMr like Mt, and we pass to the next 
lot. Dives, who would ever ksve iihought, as we sat round the broad 
table sparkling with plate and spotless Hoeii, erear to have seen such a dish 
at the head of it as that roaring aucti<»wer ? 

It was rather late in the sale. Tkt exeesQent drawing-room furniture 
by the best makers ; the rare and lEadOus wines selected, regardless of cost, 
and with the well known taste of t¥e pnrdiaser ; the rich and complete 
set of family plate had been sold on the previoos days. Certain of the best 
wines (which all had a great character among amateurs in the neighbour- 
hood) had been purchased for his master, who knew them very well, by 
the boitkr ol our fnend Joha Osbome^ Esquire, of Aussell Square. A 
simU portum of the most usefnd articles of the plate had been bought by 
SQBie young aioek-hiokers from the dty . And now the pubMc bdng invited 
to the purchase of minor objects, it happened that the orator on the table 
was expatiatiag on. the BMzits of a picture, whk^ he sought to ree<»nmend 
to hi» audienee : )b was by no means so* sdect or nuB(i!««ius a c(»npany as 
had attended the pievioiia days c^ the auctiee. 

"^ No. S^V roared Mr. Hasunerdown. "Portrait of a gentleman on an 
elephant. Wbo'U bid fox the gentl^uaft on the elephant P lift up the 
picture^ Bh^nnam, and tet tibe company exaniine this lot." A bng, pale, 
military-looking gentleman, seated demurely at the. mahogany table, could 
not help grianing as this valuable lot was ahown by Mr. Blowman. 
*' TuiB the deph^t to the Captain, Howman^ What shall we say, sir, 
for the eleipjuaLt P" buit the Caf)taini blushing m a very hurried and dis* 
comfited manner^ turned away his l^ad, and the auctioneer repeated his 

" Shall we aay twenty gidneas for this work of art P — ^fifteen, five, name 
your own priee* The g^tlema^ without the dephant is w(»:th five 

^* I wonder it abt e^oae down with him," said a professional wag, ^^he's 
any how a precbua bdg one ;" at which (fw the elephant-rider was rejare- 
sented as of a very stout figure) there was a general giggte in the room. 

" Don't be trying to deprecate the value of the lot, Mr, Moss," Mi, 
Hammerdown sud ; " let the company examine it as a work of art — ^the 
attitude of the gaOant animal quite aec(»rding to natur ; the gentleman in 
a nankeen-jacket^ his gun in his hand is going to the chace ; in the dis- 
tance a banyhanft-tree and a pagody, most likely resemblances of some 




interesting spot in our famous Eastern possessions. How much for this 
lot ? Come, gentlemen, don't keep me here all day." 

Some one bid five shillings, at which the military gentleman looked 
towards the quarter from which this splendid offer had come ; and there 
saw another officer with a young lady on his arm, who both appeared to 
be highly amused with the scene, and to whom, finally, this lot was knocked 

down for half-a-guinea. He at the table looked more surprised and dis* 
composed than ever when he spied this pair, and his head sank into his 
military collar, and he turned his back upon them, so as to avoid them 

Of all the other articles which Mr. Hammerdown had the honour to offer 
for public competition that day it is not our purpose to make mention, 
save of one only ; this was a little square piano which came down from the 
upper regions of the house (the state grand piano having been disposed of 
previously); this the young lady tried with a rapid and skilful hand, 
(making the ofiicer blush and start again), and for it, when its turn came, 
her agent began to bid. 

But there was an opposition here. The Hebrew aide-de-camp in the 
service of the officer at the table bid against the Hebrew gentleman em- 
ployed by the elephant pur<5hasers, and a brisk battle ensued over this 
little piano, the combatants being greatly encouraged by Mr. Hammerdown, 

At last, when the competition had been prolonged for some time, the 
elephant captain and lady desisted from the race; and the hammer 
coming down, the auctioneer said ; — " Mr. Lewis, twenty-five," and Mr. 
Lewis's chief thus became the proprietor of the little square piano. 
Having effected the purchase, he sate up as if he was greatly relieved, and 
the unsuccessful competitors catching a glimpse of him at this moment, 
the lady said to her friend, 

"Why, Bawdon, it 's Captain Dobbin." 

I suppose Becky was discontented with the new piano her husband had 
hired for her, or perhaps the proprietors of that instrument had fetched it 
away, declining farther credit, or perhaps she had a particular attachment 
for the one wMch she had first tried to purchase, recollecting it in old 


days, when she used to play upon it, in the little sitting-room of our dear 
Amdia Sedley« 

The sale was at the old house in Eussell Square, where we passed some 
evenings together at the beginning of this story. Good old John Sedley 
was a ruined man. His name had been prodaomed as a defaulter on the 
Stock Exchange, and his bankruptcy and commercial extermination had 
followed. Mr. Osborne's butler came to buy some of the famous port 
wms^ to transfer to the cellars over. the way. As for one dozen well- 
manufactured silver spoons and forks at per oz., and one dozen dessert 
ditto ditto, there were three young stockbrokers (Messrs. Dale, Spiggot, 
and Dale, of Threadneedle street, indeed), who having had dealings with 
tiie old man, and kindnesses from him in days when he was kind to 
every body wkh whom he dealt» sent this little spar out of the wreck with 
their love to good Mrs. Sedley ; and with respect to the piano, as it had 
been Amelia's, and as she might miss it. and want one now, and as Cap- 
tain William Dobbin could no more play upon it, than he could dance on 
the tight-rope, it is probable that he did not purchase it for his own use. 

In a word, it arrived that evening, at a wonderful small cottage in a 
street leading from the Fulham Boad-— one of those streets which have: 
the finest romantic names — (this was called St. Adelaide Yillas, Anna- 
Maria Eoad, West), where the houses look like baby-houses ; where the 
people looking out of the first-floor windows, must infallibly, as you think, 
sit with their feet in the parlours ; where the shrubs in the little gardens 
in front, bloom with a perennial display of little children's pinafores, little 
red socks, caps, &c. (polyandria polygynia) ; whence you hear the sound 
of jingling spinets and women singing; where little porter pots hang on 
the railings sunning themselves ; whither of evenings you see city clerks 
padding wearily : here it was that Mr. Clapp, the clerk of Mr. Sedley, had 
his domicile, and in this asylum the good old gentleman hid his head 
with his wife and daughter when the crash came. 

Jos Sedley had acted as a man of his disposition would, when the an; 
nouncement of the family-misfortune reached him. He did not come ta 
London, but he wrote to his mother to draw upon his agents for whatever 
money was wanted, so that his kind broken-spirited old parents had no 
present poverty to fear. This done, Jos went on at the boarding-house 
at Cheltenham pretty much as before. He drove his curricle ; he drank 
his claret ; he played his rubber ; he told Ids Indian stories, and the Irish 
widow consoled and flattered him as usual. His present of money, needful 
as it was, made little impression on his parents ; and I have heard Amelia 
say, that the first day on which she saw her father lift up his head after 
the failure, was on the receipt of the packet of forks and spoons with the 
young stockbroker's love, over which he bm-st out, crying like a child, 
being greatly more affected than even his wife, to whom the present was 
addressed. Edward Dale, the junior of the house, who purchased the 
spoons for the firm, was, in fact, very sweet upon Amelia, and offered for 
her in spite of all. He married Miss Louisa Cutts (daughter of Higham 
and Cutts, the eminent corn-factors), with a handsome fortune in 1820 ; 
and is now living in splendour, and with a numerous family, at his elegant 

L 2 

Ui TAjnrr faiiu 

Tflla, Mnswdl HQl. But ire must not let the feoollectbns of ikd» good 

fellow cause us to diverge from the plain and principal history. 

I hope the reader has mxu^ too good an opinion of Captam and Mrs. 
Crawley to suppose that they ever would have dreamed of paying a viaitto 
80 remote a district as Bloomsbury, if th^ thought the family wh<Hn th^ 
proposed to honour with a visit were not merely out of fashioii, but oat ol 
money, and could be serviceable to them in no possible manner. Bebecoa 
was entirely surprised at the sight of the comfortalile old house where she 
had met with no small kindness, ransacked by brdoers and bargainars, and 
its quiet family treasures given up to public desecration and plunder. A 
month after h^ flight, she hadbd;hought her of Amelia, and Bawdon, with 
a horse laugh, had expressed a perfect willingness to see young (George 
Osborne again. " He*s a very agreeable acquaintance. Beck," the wag 
added. " Vd like to sell him another horse, !Bedi:. I'd like to play a few 
more games at billiards with him. He'd be what I call useflU just now, 
Mrs. C. — ^ha, ha ! " by whidi sort of ^eeoh it is not to be supposed that 
Bawdon Crawley had a deliberate desire tooheat Mr. Osborne at play, but 
only wished to take that fair advantage of him which ahnost sveiy sporting 
gentleman in Vanity Fair considers to be his due from his neighbour. 

The old Aunt was long in " ooming-to/' A month had elapsed. Bawdon 
was denied the door by Mr. Bowls ; his servants could not get a lodge^ 
ment in the house at Park Lane ; his letters wrare sent back unopened. 
Miss Crawley never stirred out — ^she was unwell — and Mrs. Bute remained 
still and never left her. Crawley and his wife both of them augured evil 
from the continued presence of Mrs. Bute. 

" Gad, I begin to perceive now why she was always bringing us together 
at Clueen's Crawley," Bawdon said. 

^' What an artful little woman 1 " ejaculated Bebeoca. 

" Well, / don't r^ret it, if you don't," the Captain eried, etiU in an amo* 
rous rapture with his wife, who rewarded him with a kiss by way of rqply, 
^nd was indeed not a little gratified by the generous confidence of her 

" If he had but a little more brains," she thought to herself, " I might 
make something of him ;" but she never let him perceive the opinion she 
bad of him ; listened with indefatigable oomplacen^Sy to his stories of the 
stable and the mess ; laughed at aJI his jokes ; felt the greatest intes'est in 
Jack Spatterdash, whose cab-horse had come down, and Bob Martingale, 
who had been taken up in a gambling-house, and Tom Cinqbars, who was 
going to ride the steeple-chase. When he came home she was alert and 
happy : when he went out she pressed him to go : when he stayed at home, 
she played and sang for him, made him good drinks, superintended his 
dinner, warmed his slippers, and steeped his soul in comfort. The best of 
women (I have heard my grandmother say) are hypocrites. We don't know 
how much they hide from us : how watchful they are when they seem most 
artless and confidential : how often those frank smiles which th^ wear so 
easily, are traps to cajole or elude or disarm — I don't mean in your mere 
coquettes, but your domestic models, and paragons of female virtue. Who 
has not seen a woman hide the dulness of a stupid husband, or coax tiia 


foxy of a savage one? We aoc^ Hm amiable alaviahaess, and piaise a 
lF(Wiaii for it : we eall ihia pretty treat^eiy truth. A good houaewife is 
of neoesaty ^ humbug ; aod Cornelia's husband was hoodwinked, as 
Potiphar was— only in a different way. 

By these attentioaa, that yeteraa lake, Rawdon Crawley, found himself 
converted into a t^ happy and submissive nuoried man. His former 
haunts Imew him not. They asked about him once or twice at his dubs« 
but did not miss him much : in those booths of Vanity Fair people seldom 
do miss each other. His secluded wife ever smiling and cheerful, his little 
eomfortal^ lodgings, snug meals, and homdy evenings, had all the charms 
of novelty and seerecy. The marriage was not yet dedared to the world, or 
published in the Morning Post. All his creditors would have come rush* 
mg on him in a body, had they known that he was united to a woman 
without fortune. " My relations won't cry ^ upon me," Becky said, with 
rather a bitter laugh ; and she was quite contented to wait until the old 
aunt should be reconciled, before she claimed her place in society. So 
she hved at Brompton, and meanwhile saw no one, or only those few of 
her husband's male companions who were admitted into her little dining- 
loom. These were all charmed with her. The little dinners, the laughing 
and diatting, the music afterwards, delighted all who participated in these 
es^yments. Major Martingale nev^ thought about asking to see the 
marriage license. Captain Cinqbars was perfectly enchanted with her skill 
in malong punch. Young Cornet and Lieutenant Spatterdash (who was 
fond of piqu^, and whom Crawley would often invite) was evidently and 
quickly smitten by Mrs. Crawley; but her own cii-cumspection and modesty 
never fonsook her for a moment, and Crawley's reputation as a fire-eating 
and jealous warrior, was a further and complete defence to his little wife. 

There are gentlemen of very good blood and fashion in this city, who 
never have entered a lady's drawing-room; so that though Eawdon 
Crawley's marriage might be talked about in his county, where, of course, 
Mrs. Bute had spread the news, in London it was doubted, or not heeded, 
or not talked about at all. He Hved comfortably on credit. He had a 
a large capital of debts, which laid out judiciously, will carry a man along 
for many years, and on which certain men about town contrive to live a 
hundred times better than even men with ready money can do. Indeed 
who is there that walks London streets, but can point out a half-dozen of 
men riding by him splendidly, while he is on foot, courted by fashion, 
bowed into their carriages by tradesmen, denying themselves nothing, and 
living on who knows what ? We see Jack ThrifSess prancing in the park, 
or darting in his brougham down Pall Mall : we eat his dinners served on 
his miraculous plate, " How did this begin, we say, or where will it end ?" 
" My dear fellow," I heard Jack once say, " I owe money in every capital in 
Europe." The end must come some day, but in the mean time Jack 
thrives as much as ever ; people are glad enough to shake him by the hand, 
ignore the little dark stories that are whispered every now and then against 
Mm, and pronounce him a good-natured, jovial, reckless fellow. 

Truth obliges us to confess that Rebecca had married a gentleman of 
this order. Everything was plentiful in his house but ready money, of 
which their menage pretty early felt the want ; and reading the Gazette 


one day, and coming upon the announcement of ** Lieutenant G. Osborne 
to be Captain by purchase, vice Smith, who exchanges,** Bawdon uttered 
that sentiment regarding Amelia's lover, which ended in the idsit to 
Russell Square. 

When Bawdon and his wife wished to communicate with Captain 
Dobbin at the sale, and to know particulars of the catastrophe which had 
befallen Eebecca's old acquaintances, the Captain had vanished; and 
such information as they got, was from a stray porter or broker at the 

" Look at them with their hooked beaks," Becky said, getting into the 
buggy, her picture under her arm in great glee. " They 're like vultures 
after a battle." 

" Don't know. Never was in action, my dear. Ask Martingale, he 
was in Spain, aide-de-camp to General Blazes." 

** He was a very kind old man, Mr. Sedley," Bebecca said ; " I 'm really 
sorry he 's gone wrong." 

"O stockbrokers — ^bankrupts — ^used to it, you know." Bawdon 
replied, cutting a fiy ofiP the horse's ear. 

" I wish we could have afforded some of the plate, Bawdon," the wife 
oontinued sentimentally. " Five-and-twenty guineas was monstrously 
dear for that little piano. We chose it at Broadwood's for Amelia, when 
she came from school. It only cost five-and-thirty then." 

" What d'ye-call'em ' Osborne,' will cry off now, I suppose, since the 
family is smashed. How cut up your pretty little friend will be ; hey, 

" I daresay she '11 recover it ;" Becky said, with a smile — and they 
drove on and talked about something else. 



UE surprised story now finds itself 
for a moment among very famous 
events and personages, and hanging 
on to the skirts of history. "VHien 
the eagles of Napoleon Bonaparte, 
the Corsiean upstart, were flying 
from Provence, where they had 
perched after a brief sojourn in 
Elba, and from steeple to steeple 
until they reached the towers of 
Notre Dame, I wonder whether 
the Imperial birds had any eye for a 
little comer of the parish of Blooms- 
bury, London, which you might have 
thought so quiet, that even the whir- 
ring and flapping of those mighty 
wings would pass unobserved there? 
"Napoleon has landed at Cannes.'* 
Such news might create a panic 
at Vienna, and cause Bussia to drop his cards, and take Prussia into a 
comer, and Talleyrand and Mettemich to wag their heads together, while 
Trince Hardenberg, and even the present Marquis of Londonderry, were 
puzzled ; but how was this intelligence to affect a young lady in Russell 
^uare, before whose door the watchman sang the hours when she was 
asleep: who, if she strolled in the square, was guarded there by the 
railings and the beadle : who, if she walked ever so short a distance to 
buy a ribbon in Southampton Bow, was followed by black Sambo with an 
enormous cane: who was always cared for, dressed, put to bed, and 
watched over by ever so many guardian angels, with and without wages. 
Bon Dieu, I say, is it not hard that the fateful msh of the great Imperial 
stmggle can't take place without affecting a poor little harmless girl of 
eighteen, who is occupied in billing and cooing, or working muslin collars 
in Bussell Square ? You, too, kindly, homely flower ! — is the great roar- 
ing war tempest coming to sweep you down, here, although cowering 
under the shelter of Holbora P Yes ; Napoleon is flinging his last stake, 
find poor little Emmy Sedley's happiness forms, somehow, part of it. 

In the first place, her father's fortune was swept down with that fatal 
news. All Ids speculations had of late gone wrong with the luckless 


old gentleman. Ventures had failed : merchants had broken : funds had 
risen when he calculated they would fall. What need to particularize? 
If success is rare and slow, everybody knows how quick and easy luin is. 
Old Sedley had kept his own sad counsel. Everything seemed to go on 
as usual in the quiet, opulent house : the good-natiu*ed mistress pursuing, 
quite unsuspiciously, her bustling idleness, and daily easy avocations ; the 
daughter absorbed still in one sdfish, tender thought, and quite regard- 
less of all the world besides, when that final crash came under which this 
worthy iGaraily fell. 

One night Mrs. Sedley was writing cards for a party ; the Os'bomes had 
given one, and i^ must not be belundhand ; John Sedley, who had come 
lioine very late from the city, sate silent at the chimney side, while his 
wife was prattling to him ; Emmy had gone up to her room ailing and 
km^irited. " She 's not happy,** the mother went on. " George 
Osborne neglects her. I Ve no patience with the airs of those people. 
The gijls have not been in the house these three weeks ; and George has 
been twice in town without coming. Edward Dale saw him at the Opera. 
Edward woi4d marry her I 'm sure ; and there 's Captain Bobbin who, I 
think, would — o>aly I hate all army men. Such a dandy as George has 
become. With his military airs, indeed! We must show some folks 
that we 're as good as they. Only give Edward Dale any encouragement,, 
and yott '11 see. We must have a party, Mr. S. Why don't you speaks 
JohnP Shall I say Tuesday fortnight ? Why don't you answer ? Good 
God, John, what has happened?" 

John Sedky nnrang up out of his chair to ineK Ms wific; who xhsl ta 
him. He seized her in his arms, and said wiitk a hasty voice, " We're 
milled, Mary. We've got the world to begin over again, dear. It 's best 
that yeu should know all, and at once." As he spoke, he trembled in 
every limb, and almost fell. He thought the news would have over- 
powered has wife — his wife, to whom he lutd never said « hard word. Bnt 
it was he that was the most nraved, sfudden as the shock was to her.. 
When he sank back into his seat, it was the wife that took the office of 
eonsQ&er. She took his honest, kind hand, and kissed it, Vkd put it round 
bar neck : she called him h» John — ^her dear John — lier old man^— her 
kind old man : ^e poured out a hundred words of x&cohereot love uud 
tenderness ; her faithful voice and fiimple caresses wrou^t Ihis kind heart 
up to an inexpressible delight and anguish, and cheered and sokcod his 
overVEuideaed soul. 

Only once in the coarse of the long night as they sate togethn; and 
poor Sedley opened his pent-up soul, and told the story of his losses ^s^d^ 
embarsassflwrnts — ^the treascm of some of his oldest friends, the maily 
kindBe9s*<»f soaie from whom he never could have ^Lpeotod it — an a 
.general oonlession'— only once did the Mthful wife give way to esoaotion. 

" My Grod, my God, it wHl break Emmy's heart," ahe «aid. 

l^e father had forgottai the poor girL She was lyin^, awake and 
unhaf^y, oveiiiead. La the midst of friends, hone, and kind pamnts, die 
!was alone. To how many pec^le can any one tell ill? Who will be open 
whore there is no sympathy, or has call to speak to those who never 


ean nactentwid ? Our gcotie Amdia was diiu nlitey. She Ind bo 
oonfidante, 80 to fif)eftk, ever since aiie liad aaytlung to eoafide. Sitt 
could B^t tell the good motiKr her doabts and cax«t: tlie weold-be Mm 
seemed eveiy day more stno^ to her. And she had rnkgaviiigs aad Iocs 
wlcick ^ daaped not aeioOTriDdge to kertelf, tiiou^ tke was skwwfh 
seeietly bzoodaoig over tfasDo* 

Her heart tried to persist i& asserting tfatt George Oetonie was woihy 
sad fidthM to het, tlioagh alie knew titherwse. Hofw many a thing had 
she said, and gat ao echo from him. How many suspicions of selfishiiesB 
and i ndifc reac e had she to enconnter and oiMtxDKkely overcooie. To 
whom OQold the poor little maityr teHl these daily straggles and tortures ? 
Her haro hiasse^T only half understood her. She did not dare to own 
that the man she lored was her ii^iior ; or to fad Ihat she had given her 
heart away too soon, Oiyen onoe, the pure bashful maiden was too 
modest, too tender, too tmstfid, too weak, too much woman to lecid it. 
We are Toiics with the affections oi our women ; and have made them 
subscribe to our doctrine too. We let their bodies go abroad libesaliy 
enou^, with smiles and ringlets and pink bonnets to disgoise ikem. instead 
fd T^ and yakmaks. But their souls must be seen by onfy one man, 
sad th^ obey not unwillingly, and oonsent to remain ai home as oor 
sfaEves-^^omni^ring to us and doing drudgery for ns. 

So impziscmed and tortured was this gentte littte ^art, when in the 
month (^ March, Anno Domino 1815, Napoieon laiuled at Cannes, and 
Louis XVIII. fled, and all Einrope was in alarm, and the &ndB ftsQ, and 
good old John Sedley was ruined. 

We axe not going to follow the worthy old stcMskbrokor through those 
last pangs and ag<Hiie8 of ruin through whieh he passed before ios oora- 
memal dindse li^ei. They declared him at the Stock Exc^nge ; he was 
wbaaA froim his house of business : his bills were protested : hb act of 
b aiAr t ^ tcy formal. The house and foxnitiae of Eussell Square were 
seized and sold up, and he and his femily were thrust away, as we ha^ 
seen, to hide their heads where they might. 

Jdm Sedley had not the heart to review the domestic establk^mient 
who Imv^e appwed now and anon in oor pages, and of whom he wse now 
fereed by ^pOFverty to take leave. The wages of those worthy people were 
daacharged with that punctuality which men frequently show who oi% owe 
in gveat sams — ^they were sorry to leave good i^aces — but Ihey dad not 
br«ftk l^ieir hearts at parting from their adored master and mistress. 
Amelia's maid was proftise in condolences, but went off quite resigned to 
better herself in a genteeler quarter of the town. Blade Sambo, with the 
hsfistuatian c^ his prcxfession, determined on setting vp a publio-hoase. 
Honest old Mrs. Bknkinsop indeed, who had seen the birth of Jos and 
Ameiia, and the wooing of John Sedley and his wife, wsa for sti^ing by 
them idthofut wages, having amassed a considerahk sum in their service : 
and she accompanied the falen people into thehr new and humMe place txf 
r^ge, wha*e ^e tended them and grumbled against them ht a while* 

Of all Sedley's opponents in his debates with his creditors which n0W 


ensued, and harassed the feelings of the good kindly old gentlanan so 
severely, that in six weeks he oldened more than he had done for fifteen 
years before — the most determined and obstinate seemed to })e John 
Osborne, his old friend and neighbonr — John Osborne, whom he had set 
up in life — ^who was under a hundred obligations to him — and whose son 
was to marry Sedley's daughter. Any one of these circumstances would 
account for the bitterness of Osborne's opposition. 

When one man has been under very remarkable obligations to another, 
with whom he subsequently quarrels, a common sense of decency, as it 
were, makes of the former a much severer enemy than a merestranger would 
be. To account for your own hardheartedness and ingratitude in such a 
case, you are bound to prove the other party's crime. It is not that you 
are selfish, brutal, and angry at the failure of a speculation — -no, no — ^it is 
that your partner has led you into it by the basest treachery and with the 
most sinister motives. fVom a mere sense of consistency, a persecutor is 
bound to shew that the fallen man is a villain — otherwise he the persecutor 
is a wretch himself. 

And as a general rule, which may make all creditors who are inclined 
to be severe, pretty comfortable in their minds, no men embarrassed arc 
altogether honest, very likely. They conceal something ; they exaggerate 
chances of good-luck, hide away the real state of affairs, say that things 
are fiourishing when they are hopeless : keep a smiling face (a dreary 
smile it is) upon the verge of bankruptcy — are ready to lay hold of any 
pretext for delay, or of any money, so as to stave off the inevitable ruin a 
few days longer. "Down with suchdishonesty," says thecreditor in triumph, 
and reviles his sinking enemy, " You fool, why do you catch at a straw ? " 
calm good sense says to the man that is drowning. ^' You villain, why do 
you shrink from plunging into the irretrievable Gazette ?" says prosperity 
to the poor devil battling in that black gulf. Who has not remarked the 
readiness with which the closest of friends and honestest of men suspect 
and accuse each other of cheating when they fall out on money matters. 
Everybody does it. Everybody is right, I suppose, and the world is a 

Then Osborne had the intolerable sense of former benefits to goad and 
irritate him : these are always a cause of hostility aggravated. Finally, lie 
had to break off the match between Sedley's daughter and his son ; and as 
it had gone very far indeed, and as the poor girl's happiness and perhaps 
character were ^compromised, it was necessary to show the strongest 
reasons for the rupture, and for John Osborne to prove John Sedley to be 
a very l)ad ehmicAQr mleed. 

At the meetings of creditors, then, he comported himself with a savageness 
and scorn towards Sedley, which almost succeeded in breaking the heart 
of that ruined bankrupt man. On George's intercourse with Amelia he 
put an instant veto — ^menacing the youth with maledictions if he broke his 
commands, and vilipending the poor innocent girl as the basest and most 
artful of vixens. One of the great conditions of anger and hatred is, that 
you must tell and believe lies against the hated object, in order, as we said, 
to be consistent. 


When the great crash came — ^the announcement of ruin, and the de- 
parture from Bussell Square, and the declaration that all was over between 
her and George — ^all oyer between her and love, her and happiness, her 
and faith in the world — ^a brutal letter from John Osborne told her in a 
few curt lines that her father's conduct had been of such a nature that all 
engagements between the families were at an end — ^when the final award 
came, it did not shock her so much as her parents, as her mother rather 
expected (for John Sedley himself was entirely prostrate in the ruins of 
his own affairs and shattered honour). Amelia took the news very palely 
and calmly. It was only the confirmation of the dark presages which had 
long gone before. It was the mere reading of the sentence — of the crime 
she had long ago been guilty — ^the crime of loving wrongly, too violently, 
against reason. She told no more qf her thoughts now than she had 
before. She seemed scarcely more unhappy now when convinced all 
hope was over, than before when she felt but dared not confess that it 
was gone. So she changed frY>m the large house to the small one without 
any mark or diflFerence; remained less in her little room for the most 
part ; pined silently ; and died away day by day. I do not mean to say 
that all females are so. My dear Miss BuUock, I do not think your heart 
would break in this way. You are a strong-minded young woman with 
proper principles. I do not venture to say that mine would ; it has suf<- 
fered, and, it must be confessed, survived. But there are some souls thus 
gently constituted, thus frail, and delicate, and tender. 

Whenever old John Sedley thought of the affair between George and 
Amelia, or alluded to it, it was with bitterness almost as great as Mr. 
Osborne himself had shown. He cursed Osborne and his family as heart- 
less, wicked, and ungrateful. No power on earth, he swore, would induce 
him to marry his daughter to the son of such a villain, and he ordered 
Emmy to banish George from her mind, and to return all the presents and 
letters which she had ever had from him. 

She promised acquiescence, and tried to obey. She put up the two or 
three trinkets ; and, as for the letters, she drew them out of the place 
where she kept them ; and read them over — as if she did not know them 
by heart already : but she could not part with them. That effort was too 
much for her ; she placed them back in her bosom agaia — ^as you have 
seen a woman nurse a child that is dead. Young Amelia felt that she 
would die or lose her senses outright, if torn away from this last consola- 
tion. How she used to blush and lighten up when those letters came ! 
How she used to trip away with a beating heart, so that she might read 
unseen. If they were cold, yet how perversely this fond little soul inter- 
preted them into warmth. If they were short or selfish, what excuses she 
found for the writer ! 

It was over these few worthless papers that she brooded and brooded. 
She lived in her past life — every letter seemed to recall some circumstance 
of it. How weU she remembered them all ! His looks and tones, his 
dress, what he said and how — ^these relics and remembrances of dead 
affection were all that were left her in the world, and the business of her 
life, to watch the corpse of Love. 


To death idhe kdked witb inexfireBnble fongiag. Tbeit, dbe tfaongfat, 
I shaU always be abie to foUow him. I am not pndsiBg her oonduet or 
lettiBg her up as a modd for Misa Buliodc to imitate. Miaa £. know 
how to regulate her feeHngs better than Uiis poor httle ereatare. Misa B. 
would nefer hare committod henelf as Unit isa^arodei^ Amelia had doae; 
pledged her loved irretrievably ; confeeaed her heart awsy» aad got back 
nothmg-— <Mi]y a brittle promne whidk was soapt and worthless in a 
laonent. Along engagemoit is a partnenhip which one party is ftiee to 
keep or to break, but wfaidi invi^ves all the capital of the othar. 

Be cautious then, young ladies ; be waiy how you engage. . Be shy of 
hrring frankly; never tell all you feel« or (a better way still) fed very 
littk. See the eonseqnenoes of bdng ]^mstundy honest and ocafiding* 
and mistnist yoursekes aad eTerybpdy. Get yowursdres married as they 
do in France, where the lawyers are the bridesmaids aad eooMantes. Ak 
any rate, nerer have any fee^gs which may make you QncQm£Drtable, or 
mtike any promises whieh you cannot at any leqidred moaient eommand 
aad withdraw. That is the way to get on, and be re^Mcted, and lums a 
Tirtttous character in Yanity Fair. 

If Amdia could have heard the comments regarding hrar wMdi w«re 
made in the chde from which her father's ruin lad just dnyen her, sAm 
would have seon what her own crimes were, and how entirely her dianeter 
was jeopardied. Soeh (dminal improdenoe Mrs. South never b^w of; 
such horrid familiarities Mrs. Brown had always ooMfemned, and the end 
might be a wanung to ker daughters. *' Captain Osborne, of oourse, 
oould not marry a iMakrupt's daughter," the Miss Dobbins aaid. '^ It 
was quite enon^ to hare been swindled by the fadier. As ibr that little 
Amelia, her folly had really passed all — " 

''All what?" Captain Dobbin roared out "HaTcn't they been en- 
gaged ev€T since th^ were children? Wasn't it as good as a marriage ? 
Dare any soul on earth breathe a word against the sweetest* the purest, 
the tenderest, tiie most angdical of young women? '^ 

^' La, William, don't be so highty tighty with its. We 'tg not bmsu 
We can't fight you," Miss Jane said. *^ We 've said nothing against 
Miss Sedley : but that her conduct throD^Msnt was mat in^ntdent, not to 
eali it by any worse name ; and that her pasents are pec^e who certainly 
merit their mi^ortuuea." 

^' Hadn't you better, now that Miss Sedl^ is free, propose for her 
yourself, WHJiam? " Miss A. asked sarcastically. ^ It would be a most 
ehgibk ftmily ocwnexkni. He 1 he ! " 

*' I marry hsxV Dobbin said, blushing very much and taJIdng quidc. 
** If you are so ready, young ladies, to chop and change, do you suppose that 
«^ is ? Laugh and sneer at that angel. She can't hear it ; and she's 
miserable and uofbrtonate, aad deserves to be langhed at. Go on jokmg, 
Ann, You're the wk of (the &mily, and the others like to hear it." 

" I must tell yon again we^re not in a baiaack» WSliam," Btisa Ann 

*' In a barrack, by Jove — I wish anybody in a banmck would say what 
you do," cried out this improved British Jiou. " I dK>uld hke to hear a 


man bresdie s word agamat li£r, by Jvpitcar. But men don't t*lk in tbii 
mjy Annx ii^s osly women, who get togetliar, «nd ]uao, and tAxnek, and 
oadde* Thore, gei airay — don't begin to esy. I only said you weare a 
<»iipie of geese^" Will Bobbin aaid, peroeiTing Miss Aim's pink eyes weie 
be g iimi n g to mdrten as nmiaL "" WeH, you'ie not geeae, yon're awan^-^ 
anything yon like, only do, do leafe Miss Sedky akme." 

Anything Hke W^Dliam's in&tnation about that siUy little flirting, ogHng 
thing was never known, the mamma and sisters i^reed together in tlimlSng ; 
and they tremUed lest, her engagement being off w^ Osborne, she shoidd 
take iqi immediately her other a^nirer and Captain. In which forebodings 
these woorihy young women no doubt judged aecMdii^ to the best of th^ 
experienee; or rather (lor as yet th^ had had no oppovtimities or manyiag 
or <^ jihii^) acowdmg to their own notions of right and wnmg. 

*' It is a meny. Mamma, tbit the regiment is ordered abroad^" the 
giris said. " Hit danger, at any rate, is spared our brother." 

Such, indeed, was the fbet ; and so it is that the French Emper(» eome^ 
in to p^orm a part in this domestie oom«dy of Vanity Fair whidi we are 
now playing, and which would nerer haxre be^ enacted without the inter<- 
Tentiott of tins angust mute personage. It was he that ruined the Boor- 
bona and Mr* John Sedley. It was he whose arrival in his capital eaUed 
up all Franee in arms to de&nd him there ; and all £urope to oust Mm^ 
WMle the Frendi natien and army were swearing fidelity round the eagles 
in the Qiamp de Mad, four mighty European hosta were getting in motion 
for the gtmidUt»9ea:Vaiffle; and one of these waa aBritish azmy^of whiek 
two hi^oea of .ours» Captain Dobbin and Ciqptain Osborne, formed a 

The news of Nuxileon's escape and landing was received by the gallant 
'^'th witk a fiery delight and enthusiasm, whu^ everybody ean understand 
who knows that funous corps. From the colonel to the smallest drumm^ 
in the regiment, all were filled witk hope and ambition cmd patriotic fury^ 
«nd thanked the Frendi Emperor as for a personal kindness in coming 
to disturb the peace of Europe. Now was the time the — ^th had so 
long panted for, to show their comrades in arms that they could fight as 
well as the Peninsular veterai^, and that all the plu(^ and valour of the 
— ^th had not been killed by the West Indies and the yellow fever. Stubble 
and Spoony looked to get their companies without purchase. Before the 
end of the campaign (which she resolved to share), Mrs. Mi^or O'Bowd 
hoped to write herself Mrs. Colonel O'Bowd, C.B. Our two friends (Dobbin 
and Osborne) were quite as much excited as the rest : and each in his 
way — Mr. Dobbin very quietly, Mr. Osborne very loudly and energeti- 
cally — ^was bent upon doing his duty, and gaining his share of honour and 

The agitation thrilling through the country and army in consequence of 
this news was so great, that private matters were little heeded : and hence 
probably George Osborne, just ga^tted to his company, busy with proper 
rations for the march, which must come inevitably, and panting for furtha: 
promotion — ^was not so much affected by other incidents which would 
bare interested him at a more quiet period. He was not, it must be cou- 


fessed, veiy much cast down by good aid Ifeflnb^ olntafftft T^ 
tnid \m mm vBtaa^ wkmk hmamm ham ifoj hmdmaafy, on the day 
wllrii tin fimt mnrtjiff nf thn nmlTtTTni of the nnfortonate gentleman took 
jhm* His fiifther tiSd him of the wicked, rascallyi shamefdl conduct of 
titt haikrnpt, reminded him of what he had said about Amelia, and that 
their connexion was broken off for ever ; and gave him that evening a 
good sum of money to pay for the new clothes and epaulets in which he 
looked so well. Money was always useful to this free-handed young 
fellow, and he took it without many words. The biUs were up in the 
Sedley house, where he had passed so many, many hn>py hours. He could 
see them as he walked from home that night (to theOJid Slaughters', where 
he put up when in town) sldnrng white in the moon. That comfortable 
home was shut, then, upon Amdia and her parents : where had they taken 
refuge P The thought of their ruin affected him not a little. ^ He was 
veiy melancholy that night in the coffee-room at the Slaughters ; and 
drank a good deal, as his comrades remarked there. 

Bobbin came in presently, cautioned him about the drink, which he 
only took, he said, because he was deuced low ; but when his friend 
be^n to put to him clumsy inquiries, and asked 1dm for news in a signi- 
ficant manner, Osborne declined entering into conversation with Mm ; 
avowing, however, that he was devilish disturbed and unhappy. 

Three days afterwards, Dobbin found Osborne in his room at the bar* 
racks: — ^his head on the table, a number of papers about, the young 
Captain evidently in a state of great despondency. ** She 's — she 's sent 
me back some things I gave her — some damned trinkets. Look here !" 
There was a little packet directed in the well-known hand to Captain 
George Osborne, and some things lying about — a ring, a silver knife he 
had ^ught, as a boy, for her at a fair j a gold chain, and a locket with 
hair in it. '* It 's all over," said he, with a groan of sidcening remorse. 
** Look, Will, you may read it if you like." 

There was a little letter of a few lines, to which he pointed, which said : 

•* My papa has ordered me to return to you these presents, which you 
made in happier days to me ; and I am to write to you for the last time. 
I think, I know you feel as much as I do the blow which has come upon 
us. It is I that absolve you from an engagement which is impossible in 
our present misery. I am sure you had no share in it, or in the cruel sus- 
picions of Mr. Osborne, which are the hardest of all our griefs to bear. 
Farewell. Farewell. I pray God to strengthen me to bear this and other 
calamities, and to bless you always. A. 

"I shall often play upon the piano — ^your piano. It was like you to 
send it." 

Dobbin was very soft-hearted.* The sight of women and children in 
pain always used to melt him. The idea of Amelia broken-hearted and 
lonely, tore that good-natured soul with anguish. And he broke out into 
an emotion, which anybody who likes may consider unmanly. He swore 
that Amelia was an angel, to which Osborne said aye with all his heart. 
He, too, had been reviewing the history of their lives, — ^and had seen her 


firom her childhood to her present age, so sweet, so innocent, so charm- 
iiu^ simple, and artlessly fond and tender. 

^l^t a pang it was to lose all that : to have had it and not prized it I 
A thousand homely scenes and recollections crowded on him — ^ia wladi he 
always saw her good and beautiful. And for himself, he Unshed with 
remorse and shame, as the remembrance of hit €nm tMakmim. and i]idif«> 
ference contrasted with thai perfect piffity, !Per ft wliSa^ f^ofjf war, evevy- 
thing was forgotten, and the pair of fnmi» ia&ed about her only* 

" Where are they ? ** Osbonie aaked, after a long talk, and a long pause, 
•—and^ in trath» with no little shame at thinking that he had taken no steps 
ta fo&Mf hsR " Where are they ? There's no address to the note." 

Bobbin knew* He had not merely sent the piano ; but had written a 
note to Mrs. Sedley, and asked permission to come and see her, — and he 
had seen her, and Amelia too, yesterday, before he came down to Chathaln; 
and, what is more, he had brought that farewell letter and packet which 
had so moved them. 

The good-natured fellow had found Mrs. Osborne only too willing to 
receive him, and greatly agitated by the arrival of the piano, which, as she 
conjectured, must have come from George, and was a signal of amity on 
his part. Captain Dobbin did not correct this error of the worthy lady, 
but listened to all her story of complaints and misfortunes with great sym* 
pathy — condoled with her losses and privations, and agreed in reprehending 
the cruel conduct of Mr. Osborne towards his first benefactor. When she 
had eased her overflowing bosom somewhat, and poured forth many of her 
sorrows, he had the courage to ask actually to see Amelia, who was above 
in her room as usual, and whom her mother led trembling down stairs. 

H^ appearance was so ghastly, and her look of despair so pathetic, 
that honest William Dobbin was frightened as he beheld it ; and read the 
most fatal forebodings in that pale fixed face. After sitting in his com- 
pany a minute or two, she put the packet into his hand, and said, " Take 
this to Captain Osborne, if you please, and — and I hope he's quite well— - 
and it was very kind of you to come and see us — and we Kke our new 
house very much. And I — I think I'll go up-stairs. Mamma, for I'm not 
very strong." And with this, and a curtsey and a smile, the poor child 
went her way. The mother, as she led her up, cast back looks of anguish 
towards Dobbin. The good fellow wanted no such appeal. He loved her 
himself too fondly for that. Inexpressible grief, and pity, and terror 
pursued him, and he came away as if he was a criminal after seeing her. 

When Osborne heard that his friend had found her, he made hot and 
anxious inquiries regarding the poor child. How was she ? How did 
she look ? What did she say ? His comrade took his hand, and looked 
him in the face. 

" George, she 's dying," William Dobbin said, — and could speak no 

There was a buxom Irish servant-girl, who performed all the duties of 
the little house where the Sedley family had found refuge ; and this girl 
had in vain, on many previous days, striven to give Amelia aid or conso- 


hlioa. Eauitj wm su^ too nd to aaprer te, or ervva to be vmaeef 
the attempts the other was makiiig n ker jbmKur. 

1*019 komm altor the talk betweea Dobibni aid OBbcroe, tlds Sflnrasit- 
Baaid came into Aiaelia^s room, where she sate aa usinl, brooding^ aiioBibf 
over her letters — her Iktld treasures. The girl, amilmg^ aiid lookb^ ardi: 
and hiqppy, made many triab to attract poor Ikmny'a atlentioii,. who, 
howerer, took so heed o£ her. 

" Misa £mmj ! ** sud the girl. 

"Ym comiBg," Emmy said, not kxJdng round. 

'"Thtre ^s a measage,*' the maid west on. " There 's sometking'-HSQme^ 
body — sore, here *s a new letter for you — do&'t be reading them M ones 
any more." And she gare bar a letter, whidli Emmy took, and read. 

'^I mast see yon,'' the letter said. ** Dearest !&umy-- dearest lo¥e^— 
dearest wife, oome to me." 

George and her mother were ovtside, waiting mitil she had read tiba 



E have seen how Mrs. Firkin, 
the lady's maid, as sooti as 
any event of impoi*tance to 
the Crawley family came to 
her knowledge, felt bound to 
conmranioate it to Mrs. Bute 
Crawley, at theKectory ; and 
have before mentioned how 
particularly kind and atten- 
tive that good-natured lady 
was to Miss Crawley's confi- 
dential servant. She had 
been a gracious friend to 
Mrs. Briggs, the companion, 
also; and had secured the 
latter's good will by a num- 
ber of those attentions and 
promises, which cost so little 
in thie making, and are yet so 
valuable and agreeaUe to 
the recipient. Indeed every 
good economist and mani^er of a household must know how cheap 
and yet how amiable these professions are, and what a flavour they give to 
the most homely dish in life. Who was the blundering idiot who said 
that "fine words butter no parsnips ?" Half the parsnips of society are 
served and rendered palatable with no other sauce. As the immortal 
Alexis Soyer can make more delicious soup for a hali^penny than an 
ignorant cook can concoct with pounds of vegetables and meat, so a skilful 
artist will make a few simple and pleasing phiases go farther than ever so 
mudi substantial benefit-stock in the hands of a mere bungler. Nay, we 
know that substantial benefits often sicken some stomach; whereas, most 
win digest any amount of fine wwds, and be always eager for more of the 
same food. Mrs. Bute had told Briggs and Firkin so often of the depth 
of her affection for them ; and what she would do if she had Miss Crawley's 
fortune for friends so excellent and attached, that the ladies in question 
had the deepest regard for her; and felt as much gratitude and confidence 
as if Mrs. Bute had loaded them with the most expensive favours. 

Eawdon Crawley, on the other hand, like a selfish heavy dragoon as he 
was, never took the least trouble to conciliate his aunt's aides-de-camp, 
showed his contempt for the pair with entire frankness — ^made Firkin pull 
off his boots on one occasion — sent her out in the rain on ignominious 



messages — and if lie gave her a guinea, flung it to her as if it were a box 
on the ear. As his Aunt, too, made a butt of Briggs, the Captain followed 
the example and levelled hb jokes at her — jokes about as delicate as a 
kick from his charger. Whereas, Mrs. Bute consulted her in matters of 
taste or difficulty, admired her poetry, and by a thousand acts of kindness 
and politeness, showed her appreciation of Briggs ; and if she made Firkin 
a twopenny-halfpenny present, accompanied it with so many compliments, 
that the two-pence-hal^enny was transmuted into gold in the heart of 
the grateful waiting-maid, who, besides, was looking forwards quite con- 
tentedly to some prodigious benefit which must happen to her on the day 
when Mrs. Bute came in to her fortune. 

The different conduct of these two people, is pointed out respectfully to 
the attention of persons commencing the world. Praise everybody, I say 
to such : never be squeamish, but speak out your compliment both point- 
blank in a man's face, and behind his back, when you know there is a 
reasonable chance of his hearing it again. Never lose a chance of saying a 
kind word. As Collingwood never saw a vacant place in his estate but he 
took an acorn out of his pocket and popped it in ; so deal with your com- 
pliments through life. An acorn costs nothing ; but it may sprout into a 
prodigious bit of timber. 

In a word, during Bawdon Crawley's prosperity, he was only obeyed with 
sulky acquiescence ; when his disgrace came, there was nobody to help or 
pity him. Whereas; when Mrs. Bute took the command at Miss Crawley's 
house, the garrison there were charmed to act under such a leader, ex- 
pecting all sorts of promotion from her promises, her generosity, and her 
kind words. 

That he would consider himself beaten, after one defeat, and make no 
attempt to regain the position he had lost, Mrs. Bute Crawley never 
allowed herself to' suppose. She knew Eebepca to be too clever and 
spirited, and desperate a woman to submit without a struggle ; and felt 
that she must prepare for that combat, and be incessantly watchM against 
assault, or mine, or surprise. 

In the first place, though she. held the town, was she sure of the prin- 
cipal inhabitant? .Would Miss Crawley herself hold out; and had she 
not a secret longing to welcome back the ousted adversary ? The old lady 
liked Kawdon, and Rebecca, who amused her. Mrs. Bute cduld not dis- 
guise from herself the fact that none of her party could so contribute to 
the pleasures of the town-bred lady. " My girls' singing, after that little 
odious governess's, I know is unbearable," the candid rector's wife owned 
to herself. ** She always used to go to sleep when IViartha and Louisa 
played their duets. Jim's stiff college manners and poor dear Bute's talk 
about his dogs and horses always annoyed her. If I took her to the 
Eectory, she would grow angry with us all, and fly, I know she would ; 
and might fall into that horrid Eawdon's dutches again, and be the victim 
of that little viper of a Sharp. Meanwhile, it is clear to me that she is 
exceedingly unwell, and cannot move for some weeks, at any rate ; during 
which we must think of some plan to protect her from the arts of those 
unprincipled people." 

In the v^ry best of moments, if anybody told Miss Crawley that she 



was, or looked ill, tlie trembling old lady sent off for lier doctor ; and I 
daresay slie f0a« very unwell after the sudden family event, which might 
serve to shake stronger nerves than hers. At least, Mrs. Bute thought it 
was her duty to inform the physician, and the apothecary, and the dame- 
de-compagnie, and the domestics, that Miss Crawley was in a most critical 
state, and that they were to act accordingly. She had the street laid knee- 
deep with straw ; and the knocker put by with Mr. Bowls's plate. She 
insisted that the Doctor should call twice a day ; and deluged her patient 
with draughts every two hours. When anybody entered the room, she 
uttered a shshahsh so sibilant and ominous, that it frightened the poor old 
lady in her bed, from which she could not look without seeing Mrs. Bute's 
beady eyes eagerly fixed on her, as the latter sat steadfast in the arm-chair 
by the bed-side. They seemed to lighten in the dark (for she kept the 

curtains closed) as she moved about the room on velvet paws like a cat. 
There Miss Crawley lay for days — ever so many days — ^Mrs. Bute reading 
books of devotion to her : for nights, long nights, during which she had to 
hear the watchman sing, the night-light sputter ; visited at midnight, the 
last thing, by the stealthy apothecary; and then left to look at Mrs. Bute's 
twinkling eyes, or the flicks of yellow that the rushlight threw on the 
dreary darkened ceiling. Hygeia herself would have fallen sick under such 
a regimen ; and how much more this poor old nervous victim P It has 
been said that when she was in health and good spirits, this venerable 
inhabitant of Vanity Fair had as free notions about religion and morals as 
Monsieur de Voltaire himself could desire, but when ilhiess overtook her, 


164 TAimT FAUL 

it was Bggntvoted by the most dreaMd tenon of deofh, and an vUet 
oowardioe took possesskm of tlie prostrate old sinner. 

Sick-bed bonulies and pioos r^ections are, to be sue, oat of place ia 
meve story-books, and we are not going (after the iaskion of some novdistb 
of the present day) to cajole' the pnbtic into a sermon, when it is only a 
coBMtdj that &e rnider pavs his money to witness. Bnt^ wiUioat picaieh- 
ing, the truth may snrdy be borne in mind, that the bustle, and triumph, 
and laughter, and gaiety which Vanity Fair exhibits in puliiie, do not 
always pursue the perftmner into private life, and that the most dreary 
depression of spirits and dismal repentances sometnnes orerGOme him. 
Beoollectionof thet)est ordained banquets will scarcely dieer sick epicures. 
Beomtiscences of the most becoming dresses and brilliant baft triumphs 
will go very litde way to console faded beauties. Perhaps statesmen, at a 
partietdar period of existence, are not much gratified at thinking over the 
most triumphant. divisions ; and the success or the pleasure of yesterday 
become of very small accouiif when a certain (albeit uncertain) morrow is 
in view, about which all of us must some day or other be speculating. O 
brother wearers of motley ! Are there not moments when one grows sick 
of grinning and tumbling, and the jingling of cap and bells ? This, dear 
friends and companions, is my amiable object — to walk with you through 
the Fair, to examine the shops and the shows there ; and that we should 
all come home after the flare, and .the noise, and the gaiety, and be 
perfectly miserable in private. 

'* If that poor man of mine had a head on his shoulders," Mrs. Bute 
Crawley thought to herself, " how useful he might be, under present cir- 
cumstances, tp this unhappy old lady I H« n^t make her repent of her 
shocking free4hinking ways ; he might nxige her to do her duty, and cast 
off that odious reprobate who has disgraced himself and his family ; and 
he might induce her to do jnstice to my dear girls and the two boys, who 
require and deserve, I am sure, every assistance whicli their relatives can 
give them." 

And, as the hatred of vice is alwig^ a progress towards virtue, IVfrs. 
Bute Crawley endeavoored to instil into her sister-is4aw a proper abhor- 
rence for all Kawdon Crawley's manifold sins : of which his uncle's wife 
brought forward such a catalogue as indeed would have served to condemn 
a whole regiment of young officers. If a man has committed wrong in life, 
I don't know any moralist more anxious to point his errors out to the 
world than his oWn relations ; s6 Mrs; Bute showed a p^ect family 
interest and knowledge of Eawdon's history. She had all the particulars 
of that ugly quarrel with Captain Firebrace, in which Bawdon, wrong from 
the beginning, ended in shooting the Captain. She knew how the un- 
ha|^y Lord Dovedale, whose mamma had taken a house at Oxford, so thnt 
he might be educated there, and who had never touched a card in his life 
till he came to London, was perverted by Kawdon at the Cocoa Tree, made 
helplessly tipsy by this abominable seducer and perverter of youth, and 
fleeced of four thousand pounds. She described with the most vivid 
minuteness the agonies of the ccmntry families whom he had ruined — ^the 
B'ons'whom he had plunged into dishonour and poverty — ^the daughters 


vpbom lie had mveigled into percfiftion. Ske Imew ikt poor tradesmen 
who were bankrupt by Ms extrcvnigance — the mean shifts and rogoeries 
with which he had ministered to it — ^the astounding falsehoods by which 
he had imposed upon the most generous of aunts, and the ingratitude and 
ridicule by which he had repaid her sacrifioest She imparted these stories 
gradually to Miss Crawley ;• gave her the whole- benefit of them ; felt it to 
be her bounden duty as a Christian woman and mother of a family to do 
so ; had not the smallest remorse or compunction for the victim whom her 
tongue was immolating ; nay, very likely thought her act was quite meri* 
tmous, and plumed herself upon her resolute manner of performing it. 
Yes, if a man's character is to be abused, say what you will, there's 
nobody like a relation to do the business. And one is bound to own, 
r^r^g this ui^<Hrtunate wretch of a Eawdon Crawley, that the mere 
truth was enough to condemn him, and that all inventions of scandal were 
quite sup^uous pains on his friends' parts. 

Eebe^, too, bnng now a relative, came in for the fullest share of Mrs. 
Bute's' kind inquiries. This ind^atigable pursuer of truth (having given 
strict orders that the door was to be denied to all emissaries or letters 
firom Bawdon), took Miss Crawley's eai-riage, and drove to her old friend 
Miss Pinkerton, at Minerva House, Chiswk;k Mall, to whom she announced 
the dreadful iniielHgence of Captain Bawdon's seduction by Miss Sharp, 
and from whom she got all the particulars she could regarding the ex- 
governess's birth and early history. The friend of the Lexicographer had 
plenty of information to give. Miss Jemima was made to fetch the draw-» 
Big-master's receipts and letters. This one was from a spunging-house : 
that entreated an advance: another was fiiU of gratitude for Eebecca's 
reception by the ladies of Chiswick : and the last document from the 
unlucky artist's pea was that in which, from his dying bed, he recom- 
mended his ovphan diild to Miss Pinkcrton's protection. There were 
juven^ letters and petitions from Eebeeca, too, in the collection, imploring 
aid for her fether, or dedaring her own gratitude. Berhaps in Vanity Fair 
th^re are no better satires than letters. Take a bundle of your dear 
friend's of ten years bade — ^your dear friend whom you hate now. Look 
at a 41® ^ yoor sister's : how you clung to each other till you quarrelled 
about the twenty pound legacy ! Get down the round-hand scrawls of 
your son who has haff broken your heart with seliish undutifulness since ; 
or a parcel of your own, breathing endless ardour and love eternal, which 
were sent back by your mistress when she married the Nabob — ^your mis- 
tress for wiiota you now caie no more than for Clueen Elizabeth. Vows, 
love, promises, oonMences, gratitude, how queerly they read after awhile I 
There ought to be a law in Vanity Fair ordering the destruction of every 
written document (except receipted tradesmen's biUs) after a certain brief 
and proper interval. Those quacks and misanthropes who advertise inde- 
lible Japan ink, should be made to perish along with their wicked disco- 
veries. The best ink for Vanity Fair use would be one that faded utterly 
iii a eouple of days, and left the paper dean and blank, so that you might 
write on it to somebody else. 

From Miss Finkerton's the indefatigable Mrs. Bute followed the track 
of Sharp and his daughter back to the lodgings in Greek Street, which 


the defunct painter had occupied ; and where portraits of the landlady in 
white satin, and of the husband in brass buttons, done by Sharp in lieu of 
a quarter's rent, still decorated the parlour walls » Mrs. Stokes was a 
communicative person, and quickly told all she knew about Mr. Sharp ; 
how dissolute and poor he was ; how good-natured and amusing ; how he 
was always hunted by bailiffs and duns ; how, to the landlady's honror, 
though she never could abide the woman, he did not many his wife till a 
short time before her death; and what a queer little wild vixen his daughter 
was ; how she kept them all laughing with her fiin and mimicry ; how she 
used to fetch the gin from the public-house, and was known in all the 
studios in the quarter — ^in brief, Mrs. Bute got such a full account of her 
new niece's parentage, education, and behaviour as would scarcely have 
pleased Rebecca, had the latter known that such inquiries were being made 
concerning her. 

Of all these industrious researches Miss Crawley had the full benefit, 
Mrs. Bawdon Crawley was the daughter of an opera girl. She had danced 
herself* She had been a model to the painters. She was brought up as 
became her mother's daughter. She drank gin with her father, &c. &c. 
It was a lost woman who was married to a lost man ; and the moral to 
be inferred from Mrs. Bute's tale was, that the knavery of the pair was 
irremediable, and that no properly-conducted person should ever notice 
them again. 

These were the materials which prudent Mrs. Bute gathered together 
in Park Lane, the provisions and ammunition as it were with which she 
fortified the house against the siege which she knew that Bawdon and his 
wife would lay to Miss Crawley. 

But if a fault may be found with her arrangements, it is this, that she 
was too eager: she managed rather too well; undoubtedly she made Miss 
Crawley more ill than was necessary ; and though the old invalid suc- 
cumbed to her authority, it was so harassing and severe, that the victim 
would be inclined to escape at the very first chance which fell -in her way. 
Managing women, the ornaments of their sex, — ^women who order every- 
thing for everybody, and know so much better than any person concerned 
what is good for their neighbours, don't sometimes speculate upon the 
possibility of a domestic revolt, or upon other extreme consequences 
resulting from their overstrained authority. 

Thus for instance Mrs. Bute, with the best intentions no doubt in the 
world, and wearing herself to death as she did by foregoing sleep, dinner, 
fresh air, for the sake of her invalid sister-in-law, carried her conviction of 
the old lady's iUness so far that she almost managed her into her coffin^ 
She poiQted out her sacrifices and their results one day to the constant 
apothecary, Mr. Clump. 

"I am sure, my dear Mr. Clump," she said, "no efforts of mine have 
been wanting to restore our dear invalid, whom the ingratitude of her 
nephew has laid on the bed of sickness. / never shrink firom personal 
discomfort : / never refuse to sacrifice myself." 

" Tour devotion, it must be confessed, is admirable," Mr. Clump says, 
with a low bow ; " but — " 


"I have scarcely dosed my eyes since my arrival ; 1 give up sleep, health, 
every comfort, to my sense of duty. When my poor James Was in the 
amaU-pox, did I allow any hireling to nurse him ? No." 

" You did what became an excellent mother, my dear Madam — the best 
pf mothers; but — " 

" As the mother of a family and the wife of an English clergyman, I 
humbly trust that iny principles are good," Mrs. Bute said, with a happy 
solemnity of conviction ; " and, as long as Nature supports me, never, 
never, Mr. Clump, will I desert the post of duty. Others may bring that 
gray head with sorrow to the bed of sickness, (liereMrs. Bute, waving her 
hand, pointed to one of old Miss Crawley's coffee-coloured fronts, which 
tvas perched on a stand in the dressing-room), but I will never quit it. 
Ah, Mr. Clump I I fear, I know that that couch needs spiritual as well a* 
medical consolation." 

** What I was going to observCy my dear Madam,"— here the jresolute 
Clump once more interposed with a bland air — "what I was going to 
observe when you gaive utterance to sentiments which do you so much 
honour, was that I think you alarm yourself needlessly about our kind 
friend, and sacrifice your own health too prodigally in her favour." 
. " I would lay down my life for my duty, or for any member of my 
husband's family," Mrs. Bute interposed, 

. " Yes, Madam, if need were ; but we don't want Mrs. Bute Crawley to 
be a martyr," Clump said gallantly. " Dr. Squills and myself have both 
considered !Miss Crawley's case with every anxiety and care, as you may 
suppose. We see her low-spirited and nervous ; family events have agi- 
tated her," 
. " Her nephew will come to perdition," Mrs. Crawley cried. 

" Have agitated her : and you arrived like a guardian angel, my dear 
Madam, a positive guardian angel, I assure you, to soothe her under 
the pressure of calamity. But Dr. Squills and I were thinkiug that our 
amiable friend is not in such, a state as renders confinement to her bed 
necessary. . She is. depressed, but this confinement perhaps adds to her 
depression. She should have change, fresh air, gaiety ; the most delight- 
ful remedies in the pharmacopoeia," Mr. Clump said, grinning and showing 
his handsome teeth. " Persuade her to rise, dear Madam ; drag her from 
her couch and her low spirits ; insist upon her takmg little diives. They 
will restore the roses too to vom cheeks, if I may so speak to Mrs. Bute 

" The sight of h^i^JiOrrid nephew casually in the Park, where I am told 
the wretch drives with the brazen partner of his crimes," Mrs. Bute said, 
(letting the cat of selfishness out of the bag of secrecy), " would cause her 
such a shock, that we should have to bring her back to bed again. She 
must not go out, Mr. Clurap. She shall not go out as long as I remain 
j^ watch over her. And as for my health, what matters it ? I give it 
cheerfully, Sir. I sacrifice it at the altar of my duty." 

" Upon my word. Madam," Mr. Clump now said bluntly, " I won't 
answer for her life if she remains locked up in that dark room. She is so 
nervous that we may lose her any day ; and if you wish Captain Crawley 
to be her heir, I warn you frankly, Madam, that you are doing your very 
best to serve him." 

168 YJiSrcr FllB. 

"Oractcfos inercy! ia herUfe in daager?" Mrs. Bute cmL " Wliy, 
wliy, Mr. Clnnq^, £d joa not inform me sooner?" 

The night before, Mr. Clamp and Dr. Squills had had a consultation (oTer 
a bottle of wine at the house of Sir Li^in Warren, whose lady was about 
to present him with a thirteenth blessmg), regarding Miss Crawley and 
her case. 

" What a little haipy thai woman from Hampshire is, Clump/' Squills 
remarked, ^that has seized upon old Tilly Crawley. Pevilish good 

** What a fool Bawdon Crawley has been," Clump replied, ** to go and 
marry a governess ! There was something about the girl, too." 

" Green eyes, fair skin, pretty figure, famous fixmtal development," 
Squills nnudcedj ** There U something about her ; and Crawley tDa$ a 
fool. Squills." 

" A d fool — always was," the apodiecaxy replied. 

*' Of course the old girl will fling hun over," said the physician, and 
after a pause added, " She'll cut up well, I suppose." 

*^ Cut up," says Clump with a grin ; " I wouldn't have her cut up for 
two hundred a year." 

•* That Hampdbire woman will kill her in two months. Chimp, my boy, 
if she stops about her," Dr. Squills said. "Old woman; foil feeder f 
nervous subject; palpitation of the heart; pressure on the brain; apo- 
plexy ; off she goes. Get her up, Squills ; get her out : or I would 'nt 
give many weeks' purchase for your two hundred a year." And it was 
adjng upon this hint that the wortihy apothecary spoke with so mudi can* 
dour to Mrs. Bute Crawley. 

Having the old lady under her hand ; in bed ; with nobody near, Mrs, 
Bute had made more than one assault upon her, to induce her to alter her 
wilL But Miss Crawley's usual terrors regarding death increased greatly 
when such dismal propositions were made to her, and Mrs. Bute saw thai 
she must get her patient into cheerful ^irits and health before she could 
hope to attain the pious object which she had in view. Whither to take 
her was the next puzzle. The only place where slie is not likely to mee^ 
those odious Bawdons is at church, and that won't amuse her, Mrs. Bute 
justly felt. " We must go and visit our beautiful suburbs of London," 
she then thought. " I hear they are the most picturesque in the worM ;" 
and so she had a sudden int^est for Hampstead, sand Homsey, and found 
that Dulwich had great charms for her, and getting her victim into her 
carriage, drove her to those rustic spots, broiling the little journeys with 
conversations about Bawdon and his wife, and telling every story to tilie 
old lady which could add to her indignation against this pair of reprobates* 

Perhaps Mrs. Bute pulled the string unnecessarily tight. For though 
she worked up Miss Crawley to a proper dislike of her disobedient nephew,, 
ilie invalid had a great hatred and secret terror of her victimizer, and 
panted to escape from her. After a brief space, she rebelled against Higk^ 
gate and Homsey utterly. She would go into the Park. Mrs. Bute knew 
they would meet the abominable Bawdon there, and she was right. One 
day in the ring, Eawdon's stanhope eame in sight ; Eebecca was seated by 
him. In the enany's equipage Miss Crawley occupied her usual place. 


with Mrs. Bute on her left, the poodle and Miss Briggs on the back seat. 
It was a nervous moment, and Eebecca's heart beat quick as she recognised 
the carriage ; and as the two vehicles crossed each other in the line, she 
clasped her hands, and looked towards the spinster with a face of agonised 
attachment and devotion. Bawdon himself trembled, and his face grew 
purple behind his dyed mustachios. Only old Briggs was moved in the 
other carriage, and cast her great eyes nervously towards her old friends. 
Miss Crawley's bonnet was resolutely turned towards the Serpentine. Mrs. 
Bute happened to be in ecstacies with the poodle, and was calling him a 
fittle darhng, and a sweet little zoggy, and a pretty pet. The carriages 
moved on, eaeh in his line. 

** Done, by Jove," Eawdon said to his wife. 

** Try once more, Bawdon,*' Eebecca answcrad. " Could not you lock your 
wheels into theirs, dearest?" 

Bawdon had not the heart for that manoeuvre. When the carriages 
met sgdb, he stood up in his staidiope ; he raised his hand ready to doff 
his hat ; he looked with aU his eyes. But this time Miss Crawley's face 
was not tamed away ; she and Mrs. Bute lodced him fiill in the face, and 
eat their nephew pitilessly. He sank back in his seat with an oath, and 
striking out of the ring, dashed away desperately homewards. 

It was a gaHant and decided triumph for Mrs. Bute. But she felt the 
danger of many such meetings, as she saw the evident nervousness of Miss 
Crawley ; and she determined that it was most necessary for her dear 
friend's health, that they should leave town for a while, and recommended 
Brighton very strongly. 



ITHOUT knowing how. Captain Wil- 
liamDobbin found himself the great 
promoter, arranger, and manager of 
the match between Greorge Osborne 
and Amelia. But for hun it never 
would have taken place : he could 
not but confess as much to himself, 
and smiled rather bitterly as he 
thought that he of all men in the 
world should be the person upon 
whom the care of this marriage had 
fallen. But though indeed the con- 
ductingof this negotiation was about 
as painfdl a task as coiild be set to 
him, yet when he had a duty to 
perfoiin, Captain Dobbin was accus- 
tomed to go through it without 
many words or much hesitation ; 
and, having made up his mind completely, that if Miss Sedley was balked 
of her husband she would die of the disappointment, he was determined to 
use all his best endeavours to keep her alive. 

I forbear to enter into minute particulars of the interview between 
Greorge and Amelia, when the former was brought back to the feet (or 
should we venture to say the arms ?) of his young mistress by the inter- 
vention of his friend honest William. A much harder heart than Greorge's 
would have melted at the sight of that sweet face so sadly ravaged by 
grief and despair, and at the simple tender accents in which she told her 
Httle broken-hearted story : but as she did not faint when her mother, 
trembling, brought Osborne to her ; and as she only gave relief to her 
overcharged grief, by laying her head on her lover's shoulder and there 
weeping for a while the most tender, copious, and refreshing tears — old 
Mrs. Sedley, too greatly relieved, thought it was best to leave the young 
persons to themselves ; and so quitted Emmy crying over George's hand, 
and kissing it humbly, as if it were her supreme chief and master, and as 
if she were quite a guilty and unworthy person needing every favour and 
grace from him. 

This prostration and sweet unrepining obedience exquisitely touched 
and flattered Greorge Osborne. He saw a slave before hun in that simple 
yielding faithful creature, and his soul within him thrilled secretly some* 
how at the knowledge of his power. He would be generous-minded. 
Sultan as he was, and raise up this kneeling Esther and make a queen of 


her : besides, her sadness and beauty tonched him as much as her 8ub« 
missioni and so he cheered her, and raised her up and forgave her, so to 
speak* All her hopes and feelings, which were dying and withering, this 
her sun having been removed from her, bloomed again and at once, its light 
being restored* You would scarcely have recognised the beaming little 
face upon Amelia's pillow that night as the one that was laid there the 
night before, so wan, so lifeless, so careless of all round about. The 
honest Irish maid-servant, delighted with the change, asked leave to 
kiss the face that had grown all of a sudden so rosy* Amelia put her 
ai'ms round the gurl's neck and kissed her with all hex heart, like a child. 
She was little more* She had that night a sweet refreshing sleep, like 
one — and what a spring of inexpressible happiness as she woke in the 
morning sunshine ! 

" He will be here again to-day," Amelia thought. " He is the greatest 
and best of men." Ajid the fact is, that George thought he was one of the 
generousest creatures alive : and that he was making a tremendous 
sacrifice in marrying this young creature. 

While she and Osborne were having their delightftd Ute-a-tete above 
staurs, old Mrs. Sedley and Captain Dobbin were conversing below upon 
the state of the affairs, and the chances and future arrangements of the 
young people* Mrs. Sedley having brought the4;wo lovers together and 
left them embracing each other with aU their might, like a true woman^ 
was of opinion that no power on earth would induce Mr. Sedley to consent 
to the match between his daughter and the son of a man who had so 
shamefully, wickedly, and monstrously treated him. And she told a long 
story about happier days and their earlier splendours, when Osborne lived 
in a very humble way in the New Eoad, and his wife was too glad to 
receive some of Jos's little baby things, with which Mrs. Sedley accom- 
modated her at the birth of one of Osborne's own children. The fiendish 
ingratitude of that man, she was sure, had broken Mr. S.'s heart : and as 
for a marriage, he would never, never, never, never consent. 

" They must runaway together, Ma'am," Dobbin said, laughing, " and 
follow the example of Captain Rawdon Crawley, and Miss Emmy's friend 
the little governess." Was it possible ? Well she never I Mrs. Sedley 
was all excitement about this news. She wished that Blenkinsop were 
here to hear it : Blenkinsop always mistrusted that Miss Sharp. — ^What an 
escape Jos had had ! and she described the already well-known love- 
passages between Eebecca and the Collector of BoggleywoUah. 

It was not, however, Mr, Sedley's wrath which Dobbin feared, so much 
as that of the other parent concerned, and he owned that he had a very 
considerable doubt and anxiety respecting the behaviour of the black- 
browed old tyrant of a Bussia merchant in Bussell Square. He has for- 
bidden the match peremptorily Dobbin thought. He knew what a savage 
determined man Osborne was, and how he stuck by his word. " The only 
chance George has of reconcilement," argued his friend, " is by distinguish* 
ing himself in the coming campaign. If he dies they both go together. If 
he fails in distinction — ^what then P He has some money from his mother, 
I have heard— enough to purchase his majority-*or he must sell out and 
go and dig in Canada or rough it in a cottage in the country*" With such 

173 TAmprr iaib. 

a partner Bobbin tkouighi be would notimiid Sibma-Hiiid, stfange toeaj, 
this absurd and otteriy impmde&i yoimg feUow iieiner finr a momaBt eon- 
ndered that the want of mdans to keep a met carnage and horses, and of 
an income which shodd eiiaUe its poseeaaors to entertain their inenda 
genteellj, ooght to operate as bars to the anioR of George and Miae Sedley. 

It was diese weighty consideratioiia whkk made him think too that the 
marriage shooH take plaee as quiddy as possible. Was he anxiotts him- 
self, I wonder, to have it over? — as peo^, when death haa oeenrred, like 
to press forward the faneral, or when a parting i& resolved upon, hasten it. 
It is eertain that Mr. Dobbin, having taken the matter in hand, was most 
extraordinarily eager in the conduct <^ it. He urged on George the 
neoessity of immediate action : he showed the c^mces of reconciliation 
with his father, which a favourable mention of bis name in tibe Gazette 
must bring about. If need were he would go himself mid brave both the 
fathers in the business. At all events, he besought George to go through 
with it b^ore the ordera came, whidi everybody expected, for the 
departure of the regiment from Ei^land on foreign service. 

Bent upon these hymeneal projects, and with the applauae and consent 
of Mrs. Sedley, who did not care to break the matter personally to her 
husband, Mr. Dobbin went to seek John Sedley at his hcmse of call in the 
City, the Tapioca Coffee-house, wh^re, since his own ^oes w«» shut np, 
and fate had overtaken him, the poor broken-down old gratk»nan used to 
betake himself daily, and write letters and receive them, and tie them up 
into mysterious bundles, several of which he carried in the flaps of his coat. 
I don't know anything more dismal than that businisas and bustle and 
mystery of a ruined man : those letters from the wealthy which he shows 
you ( those worn greasy documents promising support and oifering oon- 
doknce which he places wbtfully before you, and on which he bnilda hm 
hopes of restoration and -liitare fortune. My beloved read^ haa no doubt 
in the eourse of his experience been waylaid by many such a luddess eom- 
panion. He takes you into the comer ; he Ims his bundle of papers oat 
of his ga^g coat pocket ; and the tape cff, and the string m Ms mouth, 
and the favourite letters sdected and laid befeire yen ; and who does «ot 
know -the sad eager hdf-era^y look which he fixes en yon with hib 
hopdleds eyos P ' 

Changed into a man of this sort, Dobbin found the onoe florid, jovial, 
and prosperous John Sedky. His coat, that used to he so glossy and trim, 
was white at the seams, and the buttons showed the copp«. His faee 
had falfen in, and was unshorn ; his Mil and neckcloth kimg laap under 
his bagging waistcoat. When he vaed to treat the boys in old days at m 
ooffee-nouse, he would shout and laugh louder than anybody there, and 
have all the waiters skipping round Mm ; it was qmte paiolUl to see how 
humble and dvil he was to John of the Tapioea, a blear-eyed old attosdant 
in dingy stockings and cracked pumps, whose business it was to serve 
gksses of wafers, and bumpers of ink in pewter, and sliees of pap^ to the 
frequenters ci tins dreary house of entotainment, where notibing else 
seemed to be consumed. As for William Dobbin, vrhom he had tipped 
repeatedly in his youth, and who had been the old genileraan's butt on a 
thousand occasions, old Sedley gave his hand to him in a veiy hes&ating. 

. yyj, c ^y///y /// //(^: '>>^//^ 

r>' ' f V/./r' 


hunUe manner^ow, and called lam '* Sir.^ A feeling of shaoiie and Temcme 
took posaessaon of William I>ol>biii as the broken okL Bian so received and 
addressed him, aa if he himself had been somehow guilty ci tiie mis&»'- 
tunes which had brought Sedl^ so low. ' . / / • 

" I am y^ glad to aee you, Oapl^ Dobbin, Sir," ssjns he, &fl<7 a 
^kuUdng look or two at his Tisitor (whose lanky figiire and military appear- 
«nce caused some excitement likewise to twinkle in the blear eyes of the 
waiter in the craoked dandng pomps, and awakened the old lady in black, 
who dozed amcmg the maiil<^ bid ooffee-cnps in the bar). *< How is the 
worthy alderman, and my lady, yonr excellent mother. Sir P" He looked 
round at the wait» m he said, *' My lady," as mneh as to say, " Hark ye, 
John, I have friends stiU, and persons of rank and reputation, too." '* Are 
you come to do anything in my way, sir ? My young friends Dale and 
^piggot do all my business for me now, until my new o&ces are ready ; 
for I'm only heare temporarily, you know. Obtain. What can we do for 
you, sir ? Wfll you like to take anything ? " 

Dobbin, with a great deal of hesitation and stuttering, protested that 
he was not in the least hungry or thirsty; that he had no business to 
transact ; that he only Oame to ask if Mr. Sedley was well, and to shake 
hands with an old frigid; and, he added, with a desperate perversion of 
truth, " My mother is very well— -that is, she's been very unwell, and is 
only waiting for the first fine day to go out and call upon Mrs. Sedley, 
-How is Mrs. Sedley, Sir ? I hope she's quite well/' And here he pau^edj 
reflecting on his own consaunmate hypocrisy ; idr the day was as fine, and 
the sunshine as bright as it ever is in Coffin Court, where the Tapioca 
Coffee-house is situated ; and Mr. Dobbin remembered that he had seen 
Mrs. Sedley himself only an hour before, having driven Osborne down to 
Fulham in his gig, and left him there tete-a-tete with Miss Amelia. 

" My wife will' be very happy to see her ladyship," Sedley repKed, 
pulling out his papers. "I've a very kind letter here from your father. 
Sir, and beg my respectful compliments to him. Lady D. will find us in 
rather a smaller house than we were accustomed to receive our friends in ; 
but it's snug, and the change of air does good to my daughter, who was 
suffering in town rather — you remember little Emmy, Sir? — ^yes, suffering 
a good deal" The old gentlenon's eyes were wandering as he spoke, 
and he was thinking of something else, as he sate thrumming on his papas 
and fumbling at f^e worn red tape. 

" You're a military man," he went on ; "I ask you, Bill Dobbin, could 
any man ev» have speculated upon the return of that Corsican scoundred 
from Elba ? When the allied sovereigns were here last year, and we gave 
'cm that dinner in the City, Sir, and we saw the Temple of Concord, and 
-the fireworks, and the Chinese bridge in St. James's Park, could any 
sensible man suppose thi^ peace was'nt really concluded, after we'd 
actually sung Te JDeum for it. Sir ? I ask you, WHiiam, could I suppose 
that the Emperor of Austria was a damned traitor — a traitor, and nothing 
more ? I don't mince words — a double-faced infernal traitor and schemer, 
who meant to have his son-in-law back all along; And I isay that the 
escape of Boney from Elba was a damned imposition aiid plot, Sir, in 
whidi half the powers of Europe wore concerned, to bring the funds down,- 


and to ruin this country. That 's wliy I'm here, William. That 's why 
my name 's in the Gazette. Why, Sir ? — ^because I kusted Hie Emperor ^ 
Bussia and the Prince Begeat. Look here. Look at my papers. Look 
what the funds were on the 1st of March — ^what the TVench fives were 
when I bought for the account. And what they 're at now. There was 
edlosion, Sir, or that villain never would have escaped. Where was the 
English Commissioner who allowed him to get away ? He ought to be 
shot. Sir — brought to a court-martial, and shot, by Jove." 

" We 're going to hunt Boney out, Sir," Dobbin said, rather alarmed at 
the fury of the old man, the veins of whose forehead began to swell, and 
who sate drumming his papers with his clenched fist. " We are going to 
himt him out. Sir — the Duke 's in Belgium already, and we expect march- 
ing orders every day." 

" Give, him no quarter. Bring back the villain's head. Sir. Shoot the 

coward down, Sur," Sedley roared. " I 'd enlist myself, by ; but I'm 

a broken old man — ^ruined by that damned scouniel — and by a parcel of 
swindling thieves in this country whom I made, Sir, and who are rolling 
in their carriages now," he added, with a break in his voice. 

Dobbin was not a little affected by the sight of this once kind old Iriend, 
crazed almost with misfortune and raving with semle anger. Pity the 
fallen gentleman: you to whom money and fair repute are the cMefest 
good ; and so, surely, are they in Vaiiity Fair. 

" Yes," he continued, " there are some vipers that you warm, and they 
sting you afterwards. There are some beggars that you put on horseback, 
and they 're the first to ride you down. . You know whom I mean, William 
Dobbin, my boy. .. I mean a purse-proud villain in Bussell Square, whom 
I knew without a shilling, and whom I pray and hope to see a beggar as 
he was when I befriended him." - 

" I have heard something of this, Sir, from my friend George," Dobbin 
said, anxious to come to his point. - "The quarrel between you and his father 
has cut him up a great deal, Sir. Indeed, I 'm the bearer of a message 
from him." ' , 

"O, thafs your errand, is it?" cried the old man, jumping up. 
"What I perhaps' he condoles with me, does he ? • Very kind of him, the 
stiff-backed prig with his dandified airs and West-end swagger. He's 
hankering about my house, is he still? If my son had the courage of a 
man, he 'd shoot him. He 's as big a villain as his father. I won't have 
his name mentioned in my house. I curse the day that ever I let him into 
it ; and I 'd rather see my daughter dead at my feet than married to him." 

" His father's harshness is not George's fault, Sir. Your daughter's 
love for him is as much your doing as his. Who are you, that you are to 
play with two young people's affections and break their hearts at your will ? " 

" Eecollect it 's not his father that breaks the match off," old Sedley 
cried out. " It 's I that forbid it. That family and mine are separated 
for ever. I 'm fallen low, but not so low as that : no, no. And so you 
may tell the whole race — son, and father, and sisters, and all." 

" It 's my belief, Sir, that you have not the power or the right to sepa- 
rate those two," Dobbin answered in a low voice ; " and that if you don't 
. give your daughter your consent, it will be her duty to marry without it. 



There *s no reason she should die or live miserably because you are wrong- 
headed. To my thinking she 's just as much married as if the banns had 
been read in all the churches in London. And what better answer can 
there be to Osborne's charges against you, as charges there are, than that 
his son claims to enter your family and marry your daughter ? '* 

A light of something like satisfaction seemed to break over old Sedley 
as this point was put to him : but he still persisted that with his consent 
the marriage between Amelia and George should never take place. 

" We must do it without," Dobbin said, smiling, and told Mr. Sedley, as 
he had told Mrs. Sedley in the day, before, the story of Rebecca's elopement 
with Captain Crawley. It evidently amused the old gentleman. "You're 
terrible fellows, you Captains," said he, tying up his papers ; and his face 
wore something like a smile upon it, to the astonishment of the blear- 
eyed waiter who now entered, and had never seen such an expression upon 
Sedley's countenance since he had used the dismal coffee-house. 

The idea of hitting his enemy Osborne such a blow soothed, perhaps, 
the old gentleman : and, their colloq^uy presently ending, he and Dobbin 
parted pretty good friends. 

"My sisters say she has diamonds as big as pigeons' eggs," Grcorge said 
laughing. " How they must set off her complexion I A perfect illumina- 
tion it must be when her jewels are on her neck. Her jet-black hair is 
as curly as Sambo's. I dare say she wore a nose-ring when she went to 
court ; and with a plume of feathers in her top-knot she would look a perfect 
Belle Sauvage." 

George, in conversation with AmeKa, was rallying the appearance of a 
young lady of whom his father and sisters had lately made the acquaint- 
ance, and. who was an ol^ect of vast respect to the Russell Square family. 
She was reported to have I don't know how many plantations in the 
West Indies; a deal of money in the funds; three stars to her name in 

176 YJLBEn fJJM. 

the East India stocklioidears' list. She had a msamAo. in Svirqy, Mid t 
house in Portland Place. The name of the rich We&t India heir0f» had 
been mentioned with i^plause in the Momix^ Post. Mrs. Haggtstoni^ 
Colonel Haggigtoim's widow, her relative, " chi^peroned " her, and kej^ her 
house. She was just from school, where she had completed her education, 
and George and his sisters'hadmether at an evening party at oldHuUcer's 
house, DeYondiire I^lace (Hulkar, Bullock, & Co. were long the corsespon* 
dents of her honae in the West Indies), and the girls had made the mo^ 
cordial advances to her, which the heiress had received with great good 
humour. An orphan in her position — ^with her money — so intertoth^l 
the Misses Osborne said. They were full of thedr new friend when they 
returned from the Hulker ball to Miss Wirt» their companion ; they had 
jmade arrangements for continually meeting, and had the carriage and 
drove to see hec the very next day. Mrs. Haggistoun, Colond' Haggis* 
toun's widow, a relation of Lord Binlde, and always tdUi:mg of him, sttuck 
the dear unsophisticated girls as rather haughty, and too much.indined to 
talk about her great relations : but Ehoda was everything th^ could wish 
— the frankest, kindest, most agreeable creature — ^wanting a little polish, 
but so good-natured. The girls Christian-named each other at once. 

** You should have seen her dress for court, Emmy,'* Osborne cried, 
laughing. ** She came to my sisters to show it off, before she was pre- 
sented in state by my Lady Binkie, the Haggistoun's kinswoman. She 's 
related to ever}^ one, that Haggistoun. Her diamonds blazed out like Vaux- 
hall on the night we were there. (Do you remember Vauxhall, Emmy, 
and Jos singing to his dearest duidle iddle arling?) Diamonds and 
mahogany, my dear ! think what an advantageous contrast — and the white 
feathers in her hair — ^I mean in her wool. She had ear-rings like chande- 
liers ; you might have lighted 'em up, by Jove — ^and a yellow satin train 
that streeled after her like the tail of a comet." 

"How old is she?" asked Enamy, to whom George was rattling away 
regarding this dark paragon, on the morning of their re-union — ^rattling 
away as no other man in the world surely could. 

" Why, the Blade Princess, though she has only just left school, must 
be two or three azid twenty. And you should see the hand she writes ! 
Mrs. Colonel Haggistoun usually writes her letters, but in a nioment of 
confidence, she put pen to paper for my sisters i she spelt satin satting, 
and Saint James's, Saint Jams." 

"Wliy, surely it must be Miss Swartz, the parlour boarder," Emmy 
said, remembering that good-natured young Mulatto girl, who had been 
so hysterically affected when Amelia left Miss Pinkerton's academy. 

" The very name," George said. " Her father was a Gperman Jew — a 
slave-owner they say — connected with the Cannibal Islands in some way 
or other. He died last year, and Miss Pinkerton has finished her educa- 
tion. She can play two pieces on the piano ; she knows three songs ; she 
can write when Mrs. Haggistoun is by to spell for her; and Jane and 
Maria already have got to love her as a sister." 

" I wish they would have loved me," said Emmy, wistfully. " They 
were always very cold tome." 

" My dear child, they would have loved you if you had had two hundred 


thousand pounds," George replied. " That is the way in which they have 
been brought up. Ours is a ready-money society. We live among 
bankers and city big-wigs, and be hanged to them, and every man, as he 
talks to you, is jingling his guineas in his pocket. There is that jackass 
Pred Bullock, is going to many Maria — there 's Goldmore, the East India 
Director, there 's Dipley, in the tallow trade — our trade," George said, 
with an uneasy laugh and a blush. ** Curse the whole pack of money- 
grabbing Tulgarians 1 I fall asleep at their great heavy dinners. I feel 
ashamed in my father's great stupid parties. IVe been accustomed to live 
with gentlemen, and men of the world and fashion, Emmy, not with a 
parcel of turtle-fed tradesmen. Dear little woman, you are the only person 
of our set who ever looked, or thought, or spoke like a lady : and you do 
it becaaee you 're an angel and can't help it. Don't remonstrate. You are 
the only lady. Didn't Miss Crawley remark it, who has lived in the best 
company in Europe P And as for Crawley, of the life Guards, hang it, 
he 's a fine fellow: and I like him for marrying the girl he had chosen." 

Amelia admired Mr. Crawley very much, too, for this ; and trusted 
Eebecca would be happy with him, and hoped (with a laugh) Jos would 
be consoled. And so the pair went on prattling, as in quite early days. 
Amelia's confidence being perfectly restored to her, though she expressed 
a great deal of pretty jealousy about Miss Swartz, and professed to be 
dreadfully frightened — ^like a hypocrite as she was — ^lest George should 
forget her for the heiress and her money and her estates in Saint Kitts. 
But the fact is, she was a great deal too happy to have fears or doubts or 
mififfivings of any sort : and having George at her side again, was not 
afraid of any heiress or beauty, or indeed of any sort qf danger. 

When Captain Dobbin came back in the afternoon to these people — 
which he did with a great deal of sympathy for them — ^it did his heart 
good to see how Ameha had grown young again — ^how she laughed, and 
chirped, and sang familiar old songs at the piano, which were only inter- 
rupted by the bell from without proclaiming Mr. Sedley*s return from the 
City, before whom George received a signal to retreat. 

Beyond the first smile of recognition — ^and even that was an hypocrisy, 
for she thought his arrival rather provoking — Miss Sedley did not once 
notice Dobbin during his visit. But he was content, so that he saw her 
happy ; and thankful to have been the means of making her so. 



OVE may be felt for any young 
lady endowed with such qualities 
as Miss Swartz possessed; and a 
great dream of ambition entered 
into old Mr. Osborne's soul, which 
she was to realize. He encouraged, 
with the utmost enthusiasm and 
friendliness, his daughter's amiable 
attachment to the young heiress, 
and protested that it gave him the 
sincerest pleasure as a father to 
see the love of his girls so well 

" You won't find," he would say 
to MissEhoda, 'Hhat splendour and 
rank to which you are accustomed 
at the West End, my dear Miss, at 
our humble mansion in Eussell 
Square. My daughters are plain, 
disinterested girls, but their hearts are in the right place, and they've con- 
ceived an attachment for you which does them honour — I say, which does 
them honour. I 'm a plain, simple, humble British merchant — an honest 
one, as my respected fnends Hulker k Bullock will vouch, who were the 
correspondents of your late lamented father. You'll find us a united, 
simple, happy, and I think I may say respected, family — a plain table, a 
plain people, but a warm welcome, my dear Miss Ehoda — ^Ehoda, let me 
«ay, for my heart warms to you, it does really. I 'm a frank man, and I 
like you. A glass of Champagne! Hicks, Champagne to Miss Swartz." 

There is little doubt that old Osborne believed all he said, and that the 
gurls were quite earnest in their protestations of affection for Miss Swartz. 
People in Vanity Fair fasten on to rich folks quite naturally. If the 
simplest people are disposed to look not a little kindly on great Prosperity, 
(for I defy any member of the British public to say that the notion of 
Wealth has not something awful and pleasing to him; and you, if you are 
told that the man next you at dinner has got half a million, not to look 
at him with a certain interest ;) — ^if the simple look benevolently on money, 
how much more do your old worldlings regard it ! Their affections rush 
out to meet and welcome money. Their kind sentiments awaken spon- 
taneously towards the interesting possessors of it. I know some respect- 
able people who don't consider themselves at liberty to indulge in friend- 
ship for any individual who has not a certain competency, or place in 


society. They give a loose to their feelings on proper occasions. And 
the proof is, that the major part of the Osborne family, who had not, in 
fifteen years, been able to get up a hearty regard for Amelia Sedley, became 
as fond of Miss Swartz in the course of a single eyening as the most 
romantic advocate of friendship at first-sight could desire. 

What a match for George she'd be (the sister and Miss Wirt agreed), 
and how much better than that insignificant little Amelia! Such a 
dashing young fellow as he is, with his good looks, rank, and accomplish- 
ments, would be the very husband for her. Visions of balls in Portland 
Place, presentations at Court, and introductions to half the peerage, filled 
the minds of the young ladies ; who talked of nothing but George and his 
grand acquaintances to their beloved new friend. . . 

Old Osborne thought she would be a great match, too, for hi^ son. He 
should leave the army ; he should go into Parliament ; he should cut a 
figure in the fashion and in the state. His blood boiled with honest 
British exultation, as he saw the name of Osborne ennobled in the person 
of his son, and thought that he might be the progenitor of a glorious line 
of baronets. He worked in the . City and on 'Change, until he knew 
everything relating to the fortune of the heiress, how her money was 
placed, and where her estates lay. Young Fred Bullock, one of his chief 
informants, would have liked to make a bid for her himself (it was so the 
young banker expressed it), only he was booked to Maria Osborne. But 
liot being able to secure her as a wife, the disinterested Fred quite 
approved of her as a sister-in-law. " Let George cut in directly and win 
her," was his advice. " Strike while the iron 's hot, you know— while 

she's firesh to the town ; in a few weeks some d ifellow from the West 

End will come in with a title and a rotten rent-roll and cut all us City 
men out, as Lord Fitzrufus did last year with Miss Grogram, who was 
actually engaged to Podder, of Podder & Brown's. The sooner it is done 
the better, Mr. Osborne ; them's my sentiments," the wag said ; though, 
when Osborne had left the bank parlour, Mr. Bullock remembered Amelia, 
and what a pretty girl she was, and how attached to George Osborne ; and 
he gave up at least ten seconds of his valuable time to regretting the 
misfortune which had befallen that unlucky young woman. 

While thus George Osborne's good feelings, and his good friend and 
genius, Dobbin, were carrying back the truant to Amelia's feet, George's 
parent and sisters were arranging this splendid match for him, which they 
never dreamed he would resist. 

When the elder Osborne gave what he called " a hint," there was no 
possibility for the most obtuse to mistake his meaning. He called kicking 
a footman down stairs, a hint to the latter to leave his service. With his 
usual fi-ankness and delicacy, he told Mrs. Haggistoun that he would give 
her a check for ten thousand pounds on the day his son was married to 
her ward ; and called that proposal a hint, and considered it a very dex- 
terous piece of diplomacy. He gave George finally such another hint 
regarding the heiress ; and ordered him to marry her out of hand, as he 
would have ordered his butler to draw a cork, or his derk to write a 

This imperative hint disturbed George a good deal. He was in the 



very firdt enthusiasm and deliglit of his second courtship of Amelia, whicK 
Was inexpressibly sweet to him. The contrast of her manners and appear- 
ance with those of the heiress, made the idea of a union with the latter 
appear doubly ludicrous and odious. Carriages and opera-boxes, thought 
he ; fancy being seen in them by the side of such a Mahogany Charmer as 
that ! Add to all, that the Junior Osborne was quite as obstinate as the 
Senior : when he wanted a thing, quite as firm in his resolution to get 
. il ; and quite as violent when angered, as his father in his most stem 

On the first day when his father formally gave him the hint that he was 
to place his affections at Miss Swartz's feet, George temporised with the 
old gentleman. " You should have thought of the matter sooner. Sir," 
he said. ** It can*t be done now, when we 're expecting every day to go 
on foreign service. Wait till my return, if I dd return ;" and then he 
represented, that the time when the regiment was daily expecting to quit 
England, was exceedingly ill-chosen: that the few days a week during 
which they were still to remain at home, must be devoted to business and 
not to love-making : time enough for that when he came home with his 
majority; " for, I promise you," said he, with a satisfied air, "that one way 
or other you shall read the name of George Osborne in the Gazette." 

The father's reply to this was founded upon the information which h^ 
had got in the City : that the West End chaps would infallibly catch hold 
of the heiress if any delay took place : that if he didn't marry Miss S., he 
might at least have an engagement in writing, to conie into effect when he 
returned to England ; and that a man who could get ten thousand a year 
by staying at home, was a fool to risk his life abroad. 

" So that you would have me shown up as a coward, Sir, and our name 
dishonoured for the sake of Miss Swartz's money," George interposed. 

This remark staggered the old gentleman ; but as he had to reply to it, 
and as his mind was nevertheless made up, he said, " You will dine here 
to-morrow. Sir, and every day Miss Swartz comes, you will be here to pay 
your respects to her. If you want for money, call upon Mj. Chopper." 
Thus a new obstacle was in George's way, to interfere with his plans 
regarding Amelia ; and about which he and Dobbin had more than one 
confidential consultation. His friend's opinion respecting the line of 
conduct which he ought to pursue, we know already. And as for Osborne, 
when he was once bent on a thing, a fresh obstacle or two only rendered 
him the more resolute. 

The dark objisct of the conspiracy into which the chiefs of th6 Osbomfe 
family had entered, was quite ignorant of aU their plans regarding her 
(which, strange td say, her friend and chaperon did iiot divulge), and, 
taking all the young ladies' flattery for genuine sentiment, iand being, as 
we have before had occasion to show, of a very warm aiid impetuous 
nature, responded t6 their affection with quite a tropical ardour. And if 
the thlth may be told, I dare say that she too had some selfish attraction 
in the EusseU Squate house ; and ill a word, thought George Osborne a 
very nice young man. His whiskers had made an impression upon her, 
dn the vefy first night she beheld them at the ball at Messrs. Hulkers; and. 

//j ( .//v/^/y^ y/^-At^yy /^r^^^^/^//^ . 


fia we know, she was not the first woman who ha(i been charmed by them. 
George had an air at oijce swaggering and melancholy, languid and fierce. 
He looked like a man who had passions, secrets, and private harrowing 
griefs and adventures. His voice was rich and deep. He would say it 
was a warm evening, or ask his partner to take an ice, with a tone as sad 
and confidential as if he were breaking her mother's death to hpr, or pre- 
luding a declaration of love. He trampled over all the young bucks of 
his father's circle, and was the hero among those third-rate men. Some 
Sew sneered at him and hated him. Sojne, like Dobbin, fanatically 
admired him. And his whiskers had began to do their work, and to curl 
themselves round the affections of Miss Sivartz. 

Whenever there was a chance of meeting him Jn Russell Square, that 
,fiimple and good-natured ypung wgman was quite in a flurry to see her 
dear Miss Osbornes. She went to great expenses in new gowns, and 
bracelets, and bonnets, and in prodigious feathers. She adorned her 
person with Jier utmost skill to please the Conqueror^ and exhibited all 
'hjer simple accomplishments to wm his favour. The girls would ask her, 
with the greatest gravity, for a little music, and she would sing her three 
songs and play her two little pieces as often as ever they asked^ and with 
an always increasing pleasure to herself. During these delectable enter- 
•tainments, Miss Wirt and the chaperon sate by, and conned over the 
peerage, and talked about the nobility. 

The day after George had his hint from his father, and a shqrt time 
before the hour of dinner, he was lolling upon a sofa in the drawing-roo;n 
in a very becoming and perfectly natural attitude of melancholy, j&e had 
been, at his father's request, to Mr. Chopper in the city, (the old gentle- 
man, though he gayje great sums i^ h^ ^on, would never specify any fixed 
allowance for him, a^d rewarded Jiim o^ as he was in the humour). He 
had then b^en to ms§ three hours with A^nelia, his dear little Amelia, at 
Fulham ; and he o^ff^ home to find his sisters spread in starched muslin 
in the drawing-j^ja^^ the dowagers cackling in the back-ground, and 
honest Swartz i^ i^ £^yourite amber-cg^re/^ satin, with turquoise- 
bracelets, .countleaB ^f^gfij fiowe^. feathers, a^ jfii sorts of tags and gim- 
cracks, al^ut as ^gjfllfr decorated as a f^ chimney-sweep on May day. 

The girls, ^^jex ^j^^'^^mpts to eng^^ him in conversation, talked 
about fashions ju^ ^ j^ drawpg-roon^ ^p^ be ^as pe^rjM^ly sick of 
their chatter. ^ yo^^ot^ted tj^ ij^ehavj^^ jiyith Httle Emory's, — their 
shrill (packed xvoices with h^ teoie^ fJfi^S tones ; thei^ jB^itudes and 
their elbows and t);^ 4i(tarch, w:^ ^ humble soft mo^^ements and 
modest gra(^. f^^ §wartz was seated in a place where Emmy had 
been accus<<cp^ i^ ^. Her be^wdled hands lay sprawling in her amber 
satin lap. ifjef ^^ijg^ and ear-rings twinkl^, and her'big eyes polled about. 
She was doing gpf^^ng with perfect contentment, and thiiddng herself 
charming. Ap^^ng so booming as the satin ^be sisters h§4 never seen. 

" Dammy,^ sQfi^ge sfdd to a confidential ifiraend, "jafee looked like a 
China doll, w|j^ ^as lathing to do aU ^ay but po gn^ and wag its 
head. By Jove, Wffl, it was all I could do to prevjeat mysetf ficom throwing 
the sofa 'Cushion at her." He restrained thai exh3)ition of sentiment, 



The sisters began to pky the Battle of Prague. " Stop that d thing,'* 

George howled out in a fury from the sofa. ** It makes me mad. Fou 
play us something, Miss Swartz, do. Sing something, anything but the 
Battie of Prague." 

" Shall I sing Blue Eyed Mary, or the air from the Cabinet ? " Miss 
Swartz asked. 

" That sweet thing from the Cabinet," the sisters said. 

" We 've had that," replied the misanthrope on the sofa. 

" I can sing Fluvy du Tajy," Swartz said, in a meek voice, " if I had 
the words." It was the last of the worthy young woman's collection. 

" O, Fleuve du Tage," Miss Maria cried ; " we have the song," and went 
to fetch the book in which it was. 

Now it happened that this song, then in the height of the fashion, had 
been given to the young ladies by a young friend of theirs, whose name was 
on the title, and Miss Swartz, having concluded the ditty with George's 
applause, (for he remembered that it was a favourite of Amelia's), Was 
hoping for an encore perhaps, and fiddling with the leaves of the music, 
when her eye feU upon the title, and she saw "Amelia Sedley" written in 
the comer. 

" Lorl" cried Miss Swartz, spinning swiftly round on the music-stool> 


" is it my Amelia ? Amelia that was at Miss F.'s at Hammersmith ? I 
know it is. It 's her, and — ^Tell me about her — ^where is she ?" 

'' Don't mention her," Miss Maria Osborne said hastily. " Her family 
has disgraced itself. Her father cheated papa, and as for her, she is never 
to be mentioned here,^* This was Miss Mam's return iot George's rude- 
ness about the Battle of Prague. 

" Are you a friend of Amelia's ?" George said, bouncing up. " God 
bless you for it, Miss Swartz. Don't believe what the giris say. 8he*s 
not to blaine at any rate. She's the best — " 

" You know you re not to speak about her, George," cried Jane. " Papa 
forbids it." ' 

" Who's to prevent me ?" George cried out. " I mil speak of her. I 
say she's the best, the kindest, the gentlest, the sweetest girl in England; 
and that, bankrupt or no, my sisters are not fit to hold candles to her. 
If you like her, go and s«# her. Miss Swartz ; she wants friends now ; 
and I say, God bless everybody who befriends her. Anybody who speaks 
kindly of her is my friend ; anybody who speaks against her is my enemy. 
Thank you. Miss Swartz ;" and he went up and wrung her hand. 

" Greorge ! George I" one of the sisters cried imploringly. 

** I say," George said fiercely, " I thank everybody who loves Amelia 
Sed — ". He stopped. Old Osborne was in the room with a face livid with 
rage, and eyes like hot coals. 

Though George had stopped in his sentence, yet, his blood being up, he 
was not to be cowed by all the generations of Osborne ; rallying instantly, 
he replied to the bullying look of his father, with another so indicative of 
resolution and defiance, that the elder man quailed in his turn, and looked 
away. He felt that the tussle was coming. " Mrs. Haggistoun, let me 
take you down to dinner," he said. " Give your arm to Miss Swartz, 
George," and they marched. 

" Miss Swartz, I love Amelia, and we've been engaged almost all our 
lives," Osborne said to his partner ; and during all the dinner, George 
rattled on with a volubility which surprised himself, and made his father 
doubly nervous, for the fight which was to take place as soon as the ladies 
were gone. 

The difference between the pair was, that while the father was violeiit 
and a bully, the son had thrice the nerve and courage of the parent, and 
could not merely make an attack, but resist it ; and finding that the 
moment was now come when the contest between him and his father was 
to be decided, he took his dinner with perfect coolness and appetite before 
the engagement began. Old Osborne, on the contrary, was nervous, and 
drank much. He floundered in his conversation with the ladies, his 
neighbours ; George's coolness only rendering hrm more angry. It made 
him half mad to see the calm way in which George, flapping his napkin, 
and with a swaggering bow, opened the door for the ladies to leave the 
room ; and filling himself a glass of wine, smacked it, and looked his father 
full in the face, as if to sjay, " Gentlemen of the Guard, fire first." The 
old man also took a supply of ammunition, blit his decanter cliiiked 
against the glass as he tried to fill it. 

After giving a great heave, and with a purple choking face, he then 


began. ''How dape yoa, Sir, mentioDi that person's name before Mks 
Swartz to-day, in my drawing-room? I aak you. Sir, how dare you do 

" Stop, Sir," says George, "don't say dare. Sir. Dara isn't a word to 
be used to a Captain in the British Army." 

" I shall say what I like to my son, Sir. I can cut him off with a shil- 
ling if I like. I can make him a beggar if I like. I will say what I like," 
the elder said. 

"I'm a gentleman though I am your son. Sir," George flnswOTed 
haughtily. "Any communications which you have to make to me, or 
any orders which you may please to give, I beg may be couched in that 
kind of language whidi I am accustomed to hear." 

Whenever the lad assumed his haughty manner, it always created either 
great awe or great irritation in the parextL Old O&bome stood in secret 
terror of his son as a better gentleman th^ himself; and perhaps my 
readers may have remarked in their experience of this Vanity Fair of ours, 
that there is no character which a low-minded man so mudi mistrui^s, as 
that of a gentleman. 

" My father didn't give me the educaiion you haw^e had, nor the advan- 
tages you have had« nor the money you have bad, XT I had kept the 
company someJbU[$ have had through m^ means, perhaps my son wouldn't 
. have any reason to brag, Sir, of his mperiority and JTed Ikd air^ (these 
words were utt^ed in the elder Osborne's most sarcastic tones). But it 
wasn't considered the part of a gentleman, in my time, for a man to insult 
his father. If I'd done any such thing, mine would bave kicked me 
down stairs. Sir." 

" I never insulted you, Sir. I said I begged you to remember your son 
was a gentleman as well as yourself. I know very well that you give me 
plenty of money," said George, (fingering a bimdle of notes whieh be had 
got in the morning from Mr. ClK>pper)« " You tell it me often eiKMigh, 
Sir. There 's no fear of my forgetting it." 

" I wish you 'd rememb^ other things as well. Sir," the sire jmsw<9%d. 
" I wish you 'd remember that in tlus house — so long as you choose to 
honour it with your company y Captain — I 'm the master, and that name, 
and that that — ^that you — ^that I say — 

" That what, Birf " George asked, with scarcely a sneer, filling another 
glass of claret. 

" 1 " burst out his Mka^ with a screaming oath — " that \h& name 

of those Sedleys never be mentioned here, Sir — not one of the whole 
'damned lot of 'em. Sir." 

" It wasn't I, Sir, that introduced Miss Sedley's name. It was my 
aisters who spoke ill <»f her to Miss Swartz ; and by Jove I'U defend her 
wherever I go. Nobody shall ^ak lightly of that name in mj presence. 
Our funily bas done hei quite enough injury already, I think, and v^sg^ 
leaire off revsliaag ber oowr she 's down. 1 11 shoot any man but you who 
dsays a word against ber." 

''Go cm, ^, go 01^" the «ld gentleman aaid^ his eyes starting out iof 
his head. 

^Go on about irbal^fiirP abont the way in ^wUdi we V^ izeated ihat 


angel of a girl ? Who told me to love her ? It was your doing. I might 
have chosen elsewhere; and looked higher, perhaps, than your society : but 
I obeyed you. And now that her heart 's mine you give me orders to fling 
it away, and puilish her, kill her perhaps — ^for the faults of other people. 
It's a shame, by Heavens," said George, working himself up into passion 
and enthusiasm as he proceeded, " to play at fast and loose with a young 
girl's affections — and with such an angel as that — one so superior to the 
people amongst whom she lived that she might have excited envy, only 
she was so good and gentle, that it's a wonder anybody dared to hate her. 
If I desert her, Sir, do you suppose she forgets me ? " 

*' I ain't' going to have any of this dam sentimental nonsense and 
humbug here. Sir," the father cried out. " There shall be no beggar- 
marriages in my familv. If you choose to fling away eight thousand a*year 
which yoii may have tor the asking you may do it : but by Jove you take 
your pack and walk out of this bouse. Sir. Will you do as I tell you, once 
for all. Sir, or will you not ? " 

"Many that mulatto woman?" George said, puUing up his shirt- 
collars. " I don't like the colour, sir. Ask the black that sweeps oppo- 
site Fleet Market, Sir, I'm npt going to marry a Hottentot Venus." 

Mr. Osborue pulled frantically at the cord by whiet he was accustomed 
to summon the butler when he wanted wine — ^and, almost black in the 
face, ordered thai; functionary to call a coach for Captain Osborne. 

" I 've done it," aaid George, cooaing into the Slaughter* an feour after- 
wards, looking very paleu 

" What^ my boy ? " says Dobbin. 

George told what had passed between his father and hinuelf. 

" I '11 laarry her to-morrow," he said with an oath. " I lave her more 
eveiy day, Dobbin." 



NEMIES the most obstinate and cou- 
rageous can't hold out against starva- 
tion : so the elder Osborne felt himself 
pretty easy about his adversary in the 
encounter we have just described ; and 
as soon as Greorge's supplies fdl 
short, confidently expected his un- 
conditional submission. It was im- 
lucky, to be sure, that the lad should 
have secured a stock of provisions on 
the very day when the first encounter 
took place; but this relief was only 
I temporary, old Osborne thought, and 
would but delay Greorge's surrender. 
No communication passed between 
father and son for some days. The 
former was sulky at this silence, but 
not disquieted ; for, as he said, he knew where he could put the screw 
upon George, and only waited the result of that operation. He told the 
sisters the upshot of the dispute between them, but ordered them to take 
no notice of the matter, and welcome Greorge on his return as if nothing 
had happened. . His cover was laid as usual every day, and perhaps the 
old gentleman rather anxiously expected him ; but he never came. Some 
one inquired at the Slaughter's regarding him, where it was said that he 
and his friend Captain Dobbin had left town. 

One gusty, raw day at the end of April, — the rain whipping the 
pavement of that ancient street where the old Slaughter's CoflEee-house 
was once situated, — George Osborne came into the coflfee-room, looking 
very haggard and pale ; although dressed rather smartly in a blue coat 
and brass buttons, and a neat buff waistcoat of the fashion of those days. 
Here was his friend Captain Dobbin, in blue and brass too, having aban- 
doned the military frock and French-grey trowsers, which were the usual 
coverings of his lanky person. 

Dobbin had been in the coffee-room for an hour or more. He had 
tried all the papers, but could not read them. He had looked at the 
clock many scores of times ; and at the street, where the rain was pattering 
down, and the people as they clinked by in pattens, left long reflections 
on the shining stones : he tattooed at the table : he bit his nails most 
completely, and nearly to the quick (he was accustomed to ornament his 
great big hands in this way) : he balanced the tea-spoon dexterously on 


the milk jug : upset it, Stc. &c: ; and in fact showed those signs of dis- 
quietude, and practised those desperate attempts at amusement, which 
men are accustomed to employ when very anxious, and expectant, and 
perturbed in mind. 

Some of his comrades, gentlemen who used the room, joked him about 
the splendour of his costume and his agitation of manner. One asked 
him if he was going to be married ? Dobbin laughed, and said he would 
send his acquaintance (Major Wagstaff, of the Engineers) a piece of cake, 
when that event took place. At length Captain Osborne made his appear- 
ance, very smartly dressed, but very pale and agitated, as we have said. 
He wiped his pale face with a large yellow bandanna pocket-handkerchief 
that was prodigiously scented. He shook hands with Dobbin, looked at 
the dock, and told John, the waiter, to bring him some cura(joa. Of this 
cordial he swallowed off a couple of glasses with nervous eagerness. His 
friend asked with some interest about his health. 

" Couldn't get a wink of sleep till daylight. Dob," said he. ' " Infernal 
headache and fever. Got up at nine, and went down to the Hummums 
for a bath. I say. Dob, I feel just as I did on the morning I went out 
with Bocket at Quebec." 

" So do I," William responded. ' " I was a deuced deal more nervous 
than you were that morning. You made a famous breakfast, I remember. 
Eat something now." 

" You 're a good old fellow, Will. I '11 drink your health, old boy, and 
farewell to — " 

" No, no ; two glasses are enough," Dobbin interrupted him. "Here, 
take away the liqueurs, John. Have some cayenne-pepper with your 
fowl. Make haste though, for it is time we were there." 

It was about half-an-hour from twelve when this brief meeting and 
colloquy took place between the two captains. A coach, into which Cap- 
tain Osborne's servant put his master's desk and dressing-case, had been 
in waiting for some time ; and into this the two gentlemen hurried under 
an umbrella, and the valet mounted on the box, cursing the rain and the 
dampness of the coachman who was steaming beside him. " We shaU 
find a better trap than this at the chutch-door," says he ; " that *s a com- 
fort." And the carriage drove on, taking the road down Piccadilly, 
where Apsley House and St. George's Hospital wore red jackets still ; 
where there were oil-lamps ; where Achilles was not yet bom ; nor the 
Pimlico arch raised ; nor the hideous equestrian monster which pervades 
it and the neighbourhood ; — and so they drove down by Brompton to a 
certain chapel near the Eulham road there. 

A chariot was in waiting with four horses; likewise a coach of the kind 
called glass coaches. Only a very few idlers were collected on account of 
the dismal dismal rain. 

'* Hang it!" said George, " I said only a pair." 

" My master would have four," said Mr. Joseph Sedley's servant, who' 

was in waiting ; and he and Mr. Osborne's man agreed as they followed 

George and William into the church, that it was a "reg'lar shabby turn 

hout ; and with scarce so much as a breakfast or a weddmg faviour." 

' "Here you are," said our old friend, Jos Sedley, coming forward. 


" You *re five minutes late, George, my boy. What a day, ehP Pemmy, 
it 's like the co^uueIlceI^ent of the rainy season in Bepgal. But you '11 
find my carriage is water-tight. Gome abng, my mother and Emmy are 
in the vestry." 

Jos Sedley was splendid. He was fatter than ever, His shirt collars 
were higher ; his face was redder ; his shii-t-frill flaunted gorgeously out of 
his variegated waistcoat. Varnished boots were not invented as yet ; but 
the Hessians on his beautiful legs shone so, that they must have been the 
identical pair in which the gentleman in the old picture used to shave 
himself; and on his light green coat there bloomed a fine wedding favour, 
like a great white spreading magnolia. 

In a word, George had thrown the great cast. He was going to be 
married. Hence fis pallor and nervousness — ^bis sleepless night and 
agitation in the morning. X have heard people who h^ve gone through 
the same thing own to the sanjue amotion. Alter three or four ceremonies, 
you get accustomed to it, no doubt ; but the first dip, every body allows, 
is awful. 

The bride was dressAd in a brown silk pelisse, (as Captain Dobbin has 
since informed me), and wore a straw bonnet with a pink ribbon*, over the 
bonnet she had a veil x>f white Chantilly lace, a gift from Mr. Joseph 
Sedley, her brother. Captain Dobbin himself had ^sked leave to present 
her with a gold chain and watch, which she sported on this occasion ; and 
her mother gave her her diamond brooch ; almost the only tridtet which 
was left to the old lady. As the service went on, Mrs. Sedley sat and 
whimpered a great deal in a pew, consoled by the Irish maid servant and 
?v^ Mrs. Clapp from the lodgings. Old Osborn e would not be present. Jos 
acted for his father, giving away the bndeTwEilst Captain Dobbin stuped 
up as groom's-man to his friend George. 

Theare was nobody in the church besides the officiating per^ns and the 
small marriage party and their attendants. The two valets sat aloof 
aup^ciliously. The rain came rattling down on the windows. In the 
intervals of the service you heard it, and the sobbing of <>ld Mrs. Osborne 
in the pew. The parson's tones echoed sadly through the empty walls. 
Osborne's " I will " was sounded in very deep base, fki^my's response 
came fiujttering up to her lips from her heart, but was scarcely heard by 
anybody except Captain Dobbin. 

When the service was comple^t^d, Jos Sedley came forward and kissed 
his »ster, the bride, for the first time for many months — George's look of 
gloom had gone« and he seemed quite proud and radiant. '' It 's vour 
turn, William," says he, putting his hand fondly upon Dobbin's shoulder; 
and Dobbin w^;it up and touched Amelia o^ the «heek.. 

Thai they we^nt into the vestry a^d signed the register. " God Hess 
you. Old Dobbin," George said, grasping him by the hand, with sonaething 
very like moisture glistening in Ws eyes.. William replied only by podding 
his head. His h^art wa^ too ftdl to say much. 

" Write diiactly, a^id come down as sooga jea you can, yoiii Jkinow," 
Osborae saiid. After Mrs. Sedley had taken an hy&imiosBi adjleu of her 
daughter, the pair want <oiff to the canjiage. " Get out of the way, you 
U^ devils,^' !Seorg.e m^i to a small crow4 of damp ;^rchins, that were 

A NOVEL Without a hero. 189 

hanging about the chapel-door. The rain drove into the bride and bride- 
groom's faces as they passed to the chariot. The postillions' favours 
draggled on their dripping jackets. The few children made a dismal 
cheer, as the carriage, splashing mud, drove away. 

"William Bobbin stood in the church-porch, looking at it, a queer iigure. 
The small crew of* spectators jeered Mm. He was not thinking about 
them or their laughter. 

" Come home and have some tiffin, Dobbin," a voice cried behind him ; 
as a pudgy hand was laid on his shoulder, and the honest fellow's review 
was interrupted. But the Captain had no heart to go a feasting with 
Jos Sedley. He put the weeping old lady and her attendants into 
the carriage along with Jos, and left them without any farther words 
passing. This cslrriage, too, drove away, and the urchins gave another 
sarcastical cheer; 

" Here, you little beggars," Dobbin said, giving some sixpences amongst 
fhetn, and then went off by himself thi-ough the rain. It was all over* 
They were married, and bappy, he prayed God. Never since he was a 
boy had he felt so miserable and so Ibnely. He longed with a heart-sick 
yearning for the first few days to be over,, that he might see her again. 

Somd ten days aflei* the above ceremony, three young men of our 
acquaintance were enjoying that beautiful prospect of bow windows on 
the one side and blue sea on the other, which Brighton affords to the 
travelliet. Sonietimes it is to\V^ards the ocean — smiling with countless 
dimples, speckled with white sails, with a hundi-ed bathing-machines kiss- 
ing the skirt of his blue garment — that the Londoner looks enraptured i 
sometimes, on the contrary, a lover of human nature rather than of pros- 
pects of any kind, it is towards the bow windows that he turns, and 
that swarm of human life which they exhibit. From one issue the notes 
of a piano, which a young lady in ringlets practises six hours daily, to the 
delight of thfe felloW-lodgers : at another, lovely Polly, the nursemaid, 
may be seen dandling Master Omnium in her arms : whilst Jacob, his 
papa, is beheld eating prawns, and devouring the Times for breakfast, at 
the window below. Yonder are the Misses Leery, who are looking out for 
the young officers of the heavies, who are pretty sure to be pacing the 
cliff; or again it is a City man, with a nautical turn, and a telescope, the 
size of a six-pounder, who has his instrument pointed seawards, so as to 
command every pleasure-boat, herring-boat, or bathing-machine that 
comes to. Or quits, the shdife, &c., &c. But have we any leisure for a 
description of Brighton ? — ^for Brighton, a clean Naples with genteel lazza- 
ironi — ^for Brighton, that always looks brisk, gay, and gaudy, like a harle- 
quin's jacket — ^foi: Brighton, which used to be seven hours' distant from 
Loudon at the time of bur story ; which is now only a hundred minutes 
off ; and which may approach who knows how much nearer, unless Join- 
ville comes and untimely bombards it ? ; 

"What a monstrous fine girl that is in the lodgings over the mil- 
liners,'^ one of these three promenaders refnarked to the other j " G&d, 
Crawley, did you see what a wink she gave me as I passed P '* 


" Don't break her heart, Jos, you rascal," said another. " DonH trifle , 
with her affections, you Don Juan !" 

<* Get away," said Jos Sedley, quite pleased, and leering up at the maid- 
servant in question with a most killing ogle. Jos was eren more splendid 
at Brighton than he had been at his sister's marriage. He had brilliant 
under-waistcoats, any one of which would have set up a moderate buck. 
He sported a military firock-ooat, ornamented with frogs, knobs, black 
buttons, and meandering embroidery. He had afifected a military appear- 
ance and habits of late ; and he walked with his two friends, who were of 
that profession, clinking his boot-spurs, swaggering prodigiously, and 
shooting death-glances at all the servant girls who were worthy to be slain. 

" What shall we do, boys, till the ladies return? " the buck asked. The 
ladies were out to Rottingdean in his carriage, on a drive. " Let 's have a 
game at billiards," one of his Mends said — ^the tall one, with lacquered 

" No, dammy ; no. Captain," Jos replied, rather alarmed. " No bil- , 
liards to-day, Crawley, my boy ; yesterday was enough." 

" Ton play very well," said Crawley, laughing. " Don*t he, Osborne ? 
How well he made that five stroke, eh? " 

** Famous," Osborne said. " Jos is a devil of a fellow at billiards, and 
at everything else, too. I wish there were any tiger-hunting about here ; 
we might go and kill a few before dinner. (There goes a fine girl 1 what 
an ancle, eh Jos ?) Tell us that story about the tiger-hunt, and the way 
you did for him in the jungle — ^il 's a wonderful story that, Crawley." 
Here George Osborne gave a yawn. " It *s rather slow work," said he, 
" down here ; what shall we do ? " 

" Shall we go and look at some horses that Snaffler 's just brought from 
Lewes fair ? " Crawley said. 

" Suppose we go and have some jellies at Dutton's," said the rogue Jos, 
willing to kill two birds with one stone. ** Devilish fine gal at Dutton's." 

" Suppose we go and see the Lightning come in, it 's just about time ? " 
George said. This advice prevaUing over the stables and the jelly, they 
turned towards the coach-ofiice to witness the Lightning's arrival. 

As they passed, they met the carriage — Jos Sedley's open carriage, 
with its magnificent armorial bearings — ^that splendid conveyance in which 
he used to drive about at Cheltenham, majestic and solitary, with his arms 
folded, and his hat cocked ; or, more happy, with ladies by his side. 

Two were in the carriage now : one a little person, with light hair, 
and dressed in the height of the fashion ; the other in a brown silk pelisse, 
and a straw bonnet with pink ribbons, with a rosy, round, happy face, 
that did you good to behold. She checked the carriage as it neared the 
three gentlemen, after which exercise of authority she looked rather 
neiTous, and then began to blush most absurdly. " We have had a de- 
lightful drive, George," she said, " and — and we *re so glad to come back ; 
and Joseph, don't let him be late." 

" Don't be leading our husbands into mischief, Mr. Sedley, you wicked, 
wicked man you," Rebecca said, shaking at Jos a pretty little finger 
covered with the neatest French kid glove. *'No billiards, no smoking, 
no naughtiness ! '' 


" My dear Mrs. Crawley — ^Ah now 1 upon my honour I " was all Jos 
could ejaculate by way of reply ; but lie managed to fall into a tolerable 
attitude, with his head lying on his shoulder, grinning upwards at his 
victim, with one hand at his back, which he supported on his cane, and 
the other hand (the one with the diamond ring) fumbling in his shirt-frill 
and among his under-waistcoats. As the carriage drove off he kissed the 
diamond hand to the fair ladies within. He wished all Cheltenham, all 
Chowringhee, all Calcutta, could see him in that position, waving his hand 
to such a beauty, and in company with such a famous buck as Bawdon 
Crawley of the Guards. 

Our yoimg bride and bridegroom had chosen Brighton as the place 
where they would pass the first few days after their marriage. And having 
engaged apartments at the Ship Inn, enjoyed themselves there in great 
comfort and quietude, until Jos presently joined them. Nor was he the 
only companion they found here. As they were coming into the Hotel 
from a sea-side walk one afternoon, on whom should they light but 
Bebecca and her husband. The recognition was immediate. Bebecca 
flew into the arms of her dearest friend. Crawley and Osborne shook 
hands together cordially enough : and Becky, in the course of a very few 
hours, found means to make the latter forget that little unpleasant passage 
of words which had happened between them. " Do you remember the 
last time we met at Miss Crawley^s, when I was so rude to you, dear 
Captain Osborne? I thought you seemed careless about dear Ainelia. 
It was that made me angry : and so pert : and so unkind : and so un- 
grateful. Do forgive me 1 Bebecca said, and she held out her hand with 
so frank and winning a grace, that Osborne could not but take it. By 
humbly and franldy acknowledging yourself to be in the wrong, there is 
no knowing, my son, what good you may do. I knew once a gentleman, 
and very worthy practitioner in Vanity Fair, who used to do little wrongs 
to his neighbours on purpose, and in order to apologise for them in an 
open and manly way afterwards — and what ensued ? My friend Crocky 
Doyle was liked everywhere, and deemed to be rather impetuous — ^but the 
honestest fellow. Becky's humility passed for sincerity with George 

These two young couples had plenty of tales to relate to each other. 
The marriages of either were discussed ; and their prospects in life can- 
vassed with the greatest frankness and interest on both sides. George's 
marriage was to be made known to his father by his friend Captain 
Dobbin ; and young Osborne trembled rather for the result of that com- 
munication. Miss Crawley, on whom all Bawdon's hopes depended, 
still held out. Unable to make an entry into her house in Park Lane, 
her affectionate nephew and niece had followed her to Brighton, where 
they had emissaries continually planted at her door. 

" I wish you could see some of Bawdon's friends who are always about 
our door," Bebecca said, laughing. " Did you ever see a dun, my dear ; 
or a bailiff and his man ? Two of the abominable wretches watched all 
last week at the greengrocer's opposite, and we could not get away until 
Sunday. If aunty does not relent, what 9haU we do ?" 

Bawdon, with roars of laughter, related a dozen amusing anecdotes 

1&2 rAKITT fAm. 

of hiiS duns, and Rebecca's adroit treatment of them. He vowed with 
a great oath, that there was no woman in Enrope who coukL talk a ere* 
ditor over as she could. Almost immediately after their marriage, her 
practice had begun, and her husband found the immense value of such a 
wife. They had credit in plenty, but they had bills also in abundance, 
and laboured under a scarcity of ready money. Did these debt-difficulties 
affect llawdon's good spirits? No. Everybody in Vanity Pair must 
have remarked how well those live who are comfortably and thoroughly in 
debt : how they deny themselves nothing ; how joUv and easy they are in 
their minds. Eawdoa and his wife had the very best apartments at the 
inn at Brighton ; the landlord, as he brouriit in the first dish, bowed before, 
them as to his greatest customers : and Eawdon abused the dinners and 
wine with an audacity which no grandee in the lemd could surpass. Long 
custom, a manly appearance, faultless boots and clothes, and a happy 
fierceness of manner, will often help a man as much as a great balance at 
the banker's. 

The two wedding parties met constantly in each other*s apartments. 
After two or three nights the gentlemen of an evening had a little picqueti 
as their wives sate and chatted apart. This pastime, and the arrival of 
Jos Sedley, who made hi3 appearance in his grand open carriage, and who 
played a few games at billiards with Captain Crawley, replenished Raw- 
don's purse somewhat, and gave him the benefit of that ready money for 
which the greatest spirits are sometimes at a stand-still. 

So the three gentlemen walked down to see the Lightning coach come 
in. Punctual to the minute, the coach crowded inside and out, the guard 
blowing his accustomed tune on the horn — ^the Lightning came tearing 
down the street, and pulled up at the coach-office. 

" Hullo ! there *s old Dobbin," George cried, quite delighted to see 
his old friend perched on the roof ; and whose promised visit to Brighton 
had been delayed until How. " How aie you, old fellow ? Glad you're 
come down. Emmy *11 be delighted to see you,'* Osborne said, shaking 
his comrade Wartnly by the hand as soon as his descent from the vehicle 
was effected — ^and then he added, in a lower and agitated voice, " What *• 
the news. Have you been in Russell Square ? What does the governor 
say ? Tell me everything." 

Dobbin looked very pale and grave. " I 've seen your father,'* said he. 
" How 's Amelia — ]\fi:s. George ? I'U tell you all the news presently : but 
1 *ve brought the great news of all : and that is — " 

" Oat with it, old fellow,'* George said. 

"We're ordered to Belgium. All the army goes — Giiards and all. 
Heavytop's got the gout, and is mad at not being able to move. O'Dowd 
goes in command, and we embark from Chatham next week." 

This news of war could not but come with a shock upon our lovers, and 
caused all these gentlemen to look very serious. 



HAT is the secret mesmerism whidi 
friendship possesses, andunder the 
operation of which a person ordi- 
narily sluggish, or cold, or timid, 
becomes wise, active, and resolute, 
in another's behalf? As Alexis, 
after a few passes from Dr. Elliot- 
son, despises pain, reads with the 
back of his head, sees mQes off,' 
looks into next weelc; and per- 
forms other wonders, of which, in 
his own private normal condition, 
he is quite incapable ; so you see, 
in the affairs of the world and 
under the magnetism of friend- 
ship, the modest man become 
bold, the shy confident, the lazy 
active, or the impetuous prudent 
and peaceful. What is it, on the 
other hand, that makes the lawyer 
eschew his own cause, and call in his learned brother as an adviser? And what 
causes the doctor, when ailing, to send for his rival, and not sit down and 
examine his own tongue in the chimney glass, or write his own prescrip- 
tion at his study table ? I throw out these queries for intelligent readers 
to answer, who know, at once, how credulous we are, and how sceptical, 
how soft and how obstinate, how firm for others and how diffident about 
ourselves : meanwhile it is certam that our friend William Dobbin, who 
was personally of so complying a disposition that if his parents had pressed 
him much, it is probable he would have stepped down into the kitchen 
and married the cook, and who, to further his own interests, would have 
found the most insuperable difficulty in walking across the street, found 
Inmself as busy and eager in the conduct of Greorge Osborne's affiiirs, as 
the most selfish tactician could be in the pursuit of his own. 

Whilst our friend George and his young wife were eiyoying the first 
blushing days of the honeymoon at Brighton, honest Willimn was left as 
George's plenipotentiary in London, to transact all the business part of the 
marriage. His duty it was to call upon old Sedley and his wife, and to keep 
the former in good humour : to draw Jos and his brother-in-law nearer 
together, so that Jos's position and dignity, as collector of Bogglywollah, 
might compensate for his father's loss of station, and tend to reconcile 


old Osborne to the alliance : and finally, to communicate it to the latter 
in such a way as should least irritate the old gentleman. 

Now, before he faced the head of the Osborne house with the news 
which it was his duty to tell, Dobbin bethought him that it would be 
politic to make friends of the rest of the family, and, if possible, have the 
ladies on his side. They can't be angry in their hearts, thought he. No 
woman ever was really angry at a romantic marriage. A little crying out, 
and they must come round to their brother ; when the three of us will lay 
siege to old Mr. Osborne. So this Machiavellian captain of infantry cast 
eiJbejj^ hkm io^ seme haippj iiicama or stratagem by which he coiJd gently 
aaS graditt% bfing tlw Mk» Osfoomes to a knowledge 4if theiir brother's 

Bf a lottfe inqoiry legaidiiig his mother's engn^lfiiii^ 1» was pretty 
soon abte to &od oust far whom of her ladyship'ii fiusMk jmAa were given 
at that season ; lAae he wovkl be likely to meci <Mon»^» dsters ; and, 
though be hwk that dbkonesce of routs oak cvooiigrpaitaHF, vfaieh many 
sensible mea, alaB, enteitsiB, he aoon found «Bfi vhoK 1^ Miss Osbornes 
were to^ be pmeiit* Making hm appearance at Ae IaD, winre he danced 
a couple of sets vidi both cf them, and nvw prodigiousdgf poMte, he 
BBtuflUy had tke eoonge to smk Miss Osborne fm aftiw mmiiBi'eosrersa- 
tion afc.aft eariy hour ^ iKxt day, when he had, be im^ ttteoBma2EicBt6 
to her news of tte ver^ greatest interest. 

What was sk thai; nade her start back, and ga^e upos Mm for a moment, 
and then oa tl&e gsomid at her £eet, aakmrnktrnt if she would faint on his 
amtv had he not by c^wtnnely treacEng ob &er toe% tstraght the young 
lady back, to sdbf-eoidarolP IVhy was she so vMentigr agitated at Dob- 
bin's reqiMstP TMseaa aever he known. But when he came the next 
day, Maria was net in. the draiwi&g-room with her sister, and Miss Wirt 
went off for the purpose: of fekhing the latter, and the Captain and Miss 
Oabome we]» k& to^itiKfr. They wore both so silent i^t tke tick-tdck 
of theSecsilee olI^geBKckkekon tibemii^-iaeee bec^nae fukeroddf 

<^What a niise party it vn last mghi," Mas Oshorae at lea^b^gan, 
eneouragin^; '^sad — and faowyoiifre impcoved ia yoor daiBicis^, €i^ 
tam BoUm. Stnefy som e fao d y hns tasght you^" she added, with axaoable 

*^ You shoald ace: me daaee a xed witk Mrs. Major O'PoFwd of cmis ; 
sxtii a ^^— did yo« ever see a p^2 Bat I think anybody oodd daoee 
with ^o», Mis» Onb^ne^ who daaee so welL" 

''Is &e Major's hi% yoiai^ aod beanlifal? Ca^sam," tiiefav <|ae»- 
ticmer covkinued. ^ AJtky wliat a teoMet thing it must be to be a soldier's: 
wife ! I wonder th^ have ai^ a^itis to daoee, and in tl^aa dreadliil 
tnoes of war too I O Captsb i)obbin, I trcanble soaoetiiDes when I t^nk 
of our dsarest George^ and thie dangers of the poor solc^. Are ttare^ 
maay married dieers of ike — &, Gaptsa Bobbm P" 

"UpoA my word^ i^e's ikying her hand rather too epenly," Miss 
Wirt thoftgM ; bat thi» observation ia maeiy pflventhetie, and was not 
heard thro^i^li tbe creviee of the door at which the governess uttered it. 

** Otxe of our youiig med is just mamed," Dobbin said, wow ooBiiBg to 


the point. "It was a tery M attaekment, and tlie young oonple are as 
poor as cliiircfa mice.'* 

" 0, how d^igMful! O, hovr romantiel " IGsa Osborne cried, as the 
Cv^piabk 9$id " oM attachment** and ••poor.'* Her sympathy encom!aged 

"The finest young fellow in the regiment," he continned. ^*Not a 
braver or handsomer officer in the army ; and such a charming wife f How 
you would like her; how you tcill like her when you know her, Misr 
Osborne." The yoong lady thought the actual moment had arrived, and 
that Bobbin's nervousness which now eame on and was visible in many 
twitdiings of his face, in his manner of beating the ground with his great 
feet, in the rapid buttoning and unbuttoning of his frock-coat, he, — ^Miss 
Osborne, I say, thoiigfat that when he had given himself a little air, he 
woukl nnbofCHxi htms^ entirely, and prepared eageily to listen. And the 
dock, in the altar on which Iphigenia was situated, beginning, after a pre- 
paratory convulsion, to toll twelve, the mere tolling seemed as if it 
would last until one — so prolonged was the kncH to the anxious spinster. 

" Buft it 's not about marri^e that I came to speak — ^that is that mar^ 
rii^e — ^Ihat is — no, I mean — my dear Miss Osborne, it 's about our dear 
ftiend Gfeorge," Bobbin said. 

" About George ? " she said m a tone so discomfited that Maria and 
Miss Wirt laughed at the other side of the door, and even thai abandoned 
wretch of a B^iibin felt inclined to sinile himself; for he was not altogether 
unconsdkms of the state of affairs; George having often bantered Idm grace* 
ftdly and said « Hang it, Will, why don't yofu take old Polly ? She 'II have 
you if you ask her. 1 11 bet you five to two^ she vnll." 

" Yes, about George, then,** he oontmned. •• There has been a differ- 
ence between Mm and Mr. Osborne. And I regard him so much — ^for you 
know we have been like brothers-^hat I hope and pray the quarrel may 
be settled. We must go abroad. Miss Osborne. We may be ordered off 
at a day*9 waarmng. Who knows what may happen in the campaign? 
Bon't be agitated, dear Miss Osborne ; and those two at least should part 

'* There has been no quarrel. Captain Bobbin, except a little usua 
scene with papa," tlie lady fOoA. ''We are expecting George back daily. 
What papa wanted was onfy for Ks good. He has but to come back, and 
I 'm sure aQ witt. be well ; and dear Skoda, who went awliy from here in 
sad sad anger, I know will forgive him. Woman forgives but too readily. 

" Such an angel as you I am snre would," Mr. Bobbin said, with atro- 
cious, astuteness. " And no man can pardon himself for giving a woman 
pain. What would you feel, if a man were faithless to you ? " 

" I should perish— I should throw myself out of window— I should 
take poison — ^I should pine and die. I know I should," Miss cried, who 
had nevertheiess gone through one or two affoirs of the heart without any 
idea of suicide. 

"And there are others,** Bobbin continued, **a3 true and as kind- 
hearted as yoursetfl I 'm not speaking abmtt the West India heiress. 
Miss Osborne, but about a poor giii wl^ George once loved, and who 



was bred firom her childhood to think of nobody but him. I 've seen her 
in her poverty uncoihplaining, broken-hearted, without a fault. It is of 
Hiss Sedley I speak. Dear Miss Osborne, can your generous heart quar- 
rel with your brother for being faithful to her? Could his own conscience 
ever forgive him if he deserted her? Be her friend — she always loved 
you — and — and I am come here charged by George to teU you that he 
holds his engagement to her as the most sacred duty he has; and to 
entreat you, at least, to be on his side." 

When any strong emotion took possession of Mr. Dobbin, and aft^ the 
first word or two of hesitation, he could speak with perfect flueticy, and it 
was evident that his eloquence on this occasion made some impression 
upon the lady whom he addressed. 

"Well," said she, "this is — most surprising — most painful — ^most 
extraordinary — what will Papa say ? — ^that George should fling away such 
a superb establishment as was offered to him, — ^but at any rate he has 
found a very brave cliampion in you. Captain Dobbin. It is of no use, 
however," she continued, affcer a pause, " I feel for poor Miss Sedley, most 
certainly — ^most sincerely you Imow. We never thought the match a 
good one, though we were always very kind to herhere^very. But 
Papa will never consent, I am sure. And a well brought up young woman 
you know,— with a well regulated mind must — George must give her up, 
dear Captain Dobbin, inde^ he must." 

" Ought a man to give up the woman he loved, just when misfortune 
befel her ? " Dobbin said, holding out his hand. " Dear Miss Osborne ! 
is this the counsel I hear from you? My dear young lady 1 you must 
befriend her. He can't give her up. He must not give her up. Would 
a man, think you, give you up if you were poor ? " 

This adroit question touched the heart of Miss Jane Osborne not a 
little. " I don't know whether we poor girb ought to believe what you 
men say, Captain," she said. "There is that in woman's tenderness 
which induces her to believe too easily. I 'm afraid you are cruel cruel 
deceivers," — and Dobbin certainly thought he felt a pressure of the hand 
which Miss Osborne had extended to him. 

He dropped it in some alarm. "Deceivers!" said he. "No, dear 
Miss Osborne, all men are not ; your brother is not ; George has loved 
Amelia Sedley ever since they were children ; no wealth would make him 
marry any but her. Ought he to forsake her ? Would you counsel him 
to do so?" 

What could Miss Jane say to such a question, and with her' own peculiar 
views ? She could not answer it, so she parried it by ' saying, " Well, if 
you are not a deceiver, at least you are very romantic; " and Captaia 
William let this observation pass without challenge. 

At length when, by the help of farther polite speeches, he deemed 
that Miss Osborne was sufficiently prepared to receive the whole news, he 
poured it into her ear. " George could not give up Amelia — George was 
married to her" — ^and then he related the circumstances of the marriage 
as we know them already, how the poor girl would have died had not her 
lover kept his faith : how Old Sedley had reftised all consent to the match, 
and a licence had been got : and Jos Sedley had come from Cheltenham 


to give away the bride : how they had gone to Brighton in Job's chariot- 
and-four to pass the honey-moon: and how George counted on his dear 
kind sisters to befriend him with their father, as women — so true and tender 
as they were — assuredly would do. And so, asking permission (readily 
granted) to see her again, and rightly conjecturing that the news he had 
brought would be told in the next five minutes to the other ladies, Captain 
Dobbin made his bow and took his leave. 

He was scarcely out of the house, when Miss Maria and Miss Wirt 
rushed in to Miss Osborne, and the whole wonderful secret was imparted 
to them by that lady. To do them justice, neither of the sisters were 
very much displeased. There is something about a runaway match with 
which few ladies can be seriously angry, and Amelia rather rose in their 
estimation, from the spirit which she had displayed in consenting to the 
union. As they debated the story, and prattled about it, and wondered 
what Papa would do and say, came a loud knock, as of an avenging 
thunder-clap, at the door, which made these conspirators start. It must 
be Papa, they thought. But it was not he. It was only Mr. Frederick 
Bullock, who had come from the city according to appointment, to conduct 
the ladies to a flower-show. « 

This gentleman, as may be imagined, was not kept long in ignorance of 
the secret. But his face, when he heard it, showed an amazement which 
was very different to that look of sentimental wonder which the counte- 
nances of the sisters wore. Mr. Bullock was a man of the world, and a 
junior partner of a wealthy firm. He knew what money. was, and the 
value of it: and a delightful throb of expectation lighted up his little eyes, 
and caused him to smile on his Maria, as he thought that by -this piece of 
folly of Mr. Greorge's she might be worth thirty thousand pounds more 
than he had ever hoped to get with her. 

" Gad ! Jane," said he, surveying even the elder sister with some interest, 
" Eels will be sorry he cried off. You may be a fifty thousand pounder yet." 

The sisters had never thought of the money question up to that 
moment, but Fred Bullock bantered them with graceful gaiety about it 
during their forenoon's excursion ; and they had risen not a little in their 
own esteem by the time when, the morning amusement over, they drove 
back to dinner. And do not let my respected reader exclaim against this 
selfishness as unnatural. It was but this present morning, as he rode on 
the omnibus from Richmond; while it changed horses, this present 
chronicler, being on the roof, marked three little children playing in a 
puddle below, very dirty and friendly and happy. To these three pre- 
sently came another little one. "Po%," says she, " t/our sister's ^ot a 
jfennt/," At which the children got up from the puddle instantly, and 
ran off to pay their court to Peggy. And as the omnibus drove off I 
saw Peggy with the infantine procession at her tail, marching with great 
dignity towards the stall of a neighbouring lollipop-woman. 



O having prepared the atsters, Dobbin hast- 
ened away to the City to peiform the rest 
and more difficult part of the task which 
he had undertaken. The idea of facing old 
Osborne rendered him not a little nervous, 
and more than onee he thought of leaving the 
young ladies to communicate the secret, 
which« as he was aware, they oo«dd not long 
retain. But he had promised to report to 
George upon the manner in which the elder 
OslKmie bore the intdligenoe; so going into 
the City to the paternal ooimting-house in 
; Thames Street, he despatched thence a note 
to Mr. Osborne begging for a half-hour's 
conversation relative to the affairs of his son 
George. Dobbin's messenger returned from Mr. Osborne's house of 
l)U8ine9s, with the complinients of the latter, who would be very happy 
to see the Captain immediately, and away accordingly Doblmi went to 
confront him. 

The Captain, with a half-gniUy secret to confess, and with tiie prospect 
of a painful and stormy interview before him, entered Mr. Osborne s offices 
with a most dismal countenance and abashed gait, and, paas^Lg through 
the outer room where Mr. Chopper presided, was greeted by that func- 
tionary from his desk with a waggish air which farther diseom&ed him. 
Mr. Chopper winked and nodded and pointed his pen towards his patron's 
door, and said, *' You 11 find the governor all ri^^t^" with the most pro- 
voking good humour. 

Osborne rose too, and shook him heartily by the hand, and said, " How 
do, my dear boy ?" with a cordiality that made poor George's ambassador 
feel doubly guilty. His hiBind lay as if dead in the old gentleman's grasp. 
He felt that he, Dobbin, was more or less the cause of all that had 
happened. It was he had brought back George to Amdia ; it waa he had 
applauded, encouraged, transacted almost the marriage which he was 
come to reveal to Gheorge's father : and the latt^ was receiving him with 
smiles of welcome; patting him on the shoulder, and calling him 
"Dobbin, my' dear boy.'* The envoy had indeed good reason to hang 
his head. 

Osborne fully believed that Dobbin had come to announce his son's 
surrender. Mr. Chopper and his principal were talking over the matter 
between George and his father, at the very moment when Dobbin's 


messengar aimed. Botk agreed that Oeoife was $endiiig ia kis subBiia- 
abn. Batik had horn Axpeotio^ it f<ir some dajs — aad ''LomI 1 Chopper, 
vitttainamage vellhwre,'' Mr. OsbGnie said to Im oierk, aaappixig his 
li^ fingera, and jiBf^iog all ikt gaineaa and diyiinga ib kis great podcets 
ju lie ^ed his suboTdmate with a look of triunpli. 

Witii Ainilar opontions cDadaoted in both pockieti» mad a Icnowii^ jolly 
air, Osborne from his akmi regarded DobbitL aeated blank and silent 
-o^osite to Inm. '' What a bus^kin be is for a Captain In the army/ ' old 
Osborne thought. *' I wonder George hasn't taoght kun better manners/' 

At last Dobbin fiuDmoned courage to begin. *'8ur«'^ said he^ "I Ve 
l»:ou^i yen soaw veiy grave news. I have been at tte Hone Guards 
this morning, and thm 's no doubt that our regiment win be ordered 
abroad, and cm its way to BelgiiuB before the week is over. And y^m 
know, Sir, that we dba'nt be home agam bdbre a tnssk whiph may be llital 
to many <rf us." 

Osborne looked gravn. ''My s ^ the regaoent wjl do its duty, Sir, 

I daresay," he said. 

'* The French are wery strong, Shr/' Dobbin went on. " The Bossians 
sad Aostiians wiU be « long time befiiie they c^an bring th^ troops down. 
We flhdl have the first of Ihe %ht. Sir; and depend m k Bfmesy will 
take eare that it siuJl be a hard one." 

"What are you driving at, Dobbin,** his iiUwlocntor said, oaeaay 

and with a scowL ** I anppoae no Jfoiton's afraid of any d Fraich- 

man^hay?" • 

^ I only mean, that before we go» and «oosidering the great and <^ain 
risk that hanigsov«rev«ryoaeofiiarr-if there are any diiiqrcaMses^ 
yon and George — it would be as wdl, Sir» that — ^that you should shake 
hands : wouldn't it? Should anything happen to him, I think you would 
never forgive yoursdf if yon hadn't parted in charity." 

As he said this, poor William Dobbin blushed crimson, and felt «mL 
owned that he himsdf was a traitor. Bat for him, perhaps^ this severance 
need never have taken place. Why had not George's marriage been 
delayed ? What call was these to press it on so eagerly ? He felt that 
George would have parted from Amelia at any rate witJMmt a mortid pang. 
Amdia, too, migkt have recovered the shook of losmg him. It wa» his 
coonsd had brought about this mwiiage, and aU that was to ensue from 
•it. And why was it P Because he loved her so much that he could not 
bear to see her unhappy : or because his own su^Berings of suspense were 
so nnendnrable that he was gkd to <»uah thcna at onoe — as we hasten a 
funeral after a dei^ or, wh^ a sepanticm from those we love is immi- 
nent, cannot rest until tjim parting be ovar. 

"Yon are a good fdlow, William," said Mr. Osborne in a softened voice; 
*' and me and George shouldn't part in ang», that is true. Look here. 
I 've done for him as much as any lather ever did. He 's had three times 
' as much money from me, as I warrant your father ever gave you. But I 
don't brag about that. How I've toiled fur him, and worked and employed 
my talents and energy, l won't say. Ask Chopper. Ask himself. Ask the 
City of London. Well, I propose to him sudi a marriage as any nobleman 
' in the land might be proud of— -the only thing in life I ever asked him — 


and he refiises me. Am I wrong ? I» the quarrel of ms^ maldii^ P ?^hai 
do I seek but his good, for which I've been toiling like a oonvict ever Jinoe 
he was ham ? Nobody can say there 's anything selfish in tne. Let him 
come back. I say, here 's my hand. I say, forget and forgive. As 'fat 
marrying now, it 's out of the question. Let him and Miss S. make it upi, 
and make out the marriage afterwards, when he comes back a Colonel; for 

he shall be a Ck)k)nel, by G he shall, if money can do it. I'm glad 

y^'ve brought him round. I know it 's you Dobbin. You Ve took him 
out of many a scrape before. Let him come. I shan't be hard. Conv& 
along, and dine in Eussell Square to-day. both of you. The old shop, 
the old hour. Yqu '11 find a neck of venison, and no questions asked." 

This praise and confidence smote Dobbin's heart very keenly. Every 
moment the colloquy continued in this tone, he felt more and more guilty. 
" Sir," said he, " I fear you deceive yourself. I am sure you do, George 
is much too high-minded a man ever to marry for money.: A threat on 
your part that you would disinherit him in case of disobedience would 
only be followed by resistance on Ms." 

"Why, hang it, man, you don't call offering him eight or ten thous^and 
a year, threatening him?" Mr. Osborne said, with still provoking good 
humour. " 'Gad, if Miss S. will have me, I 'm her man. / aint par- 
ticular about a shade or so of tawny." And the old gentleman gave his 
knowing grin, and coarse laugh. 

" You forget. Sir, previous engagements into which Captain Osborne 
had entered," the amba8sa(for said, gravely. 

"What engagements? What the devil do you mean? You don't 
mean," Mr. Osborne continued, gathering wraths and astonishment as the 
thought now first came upon him^— you don't mean that he's such a 

d fool as to be still hankering after that swindling old bankrupt's 

daughter ? You 've not come here for to make me suppose that he wants 
to marry her? Marry her, that is a good one. My son and heir marry 

a beggar's girl out of a gutter. D him, if he does, let him buy a 

broom and sweep a crossing. She was always dangling and ogling after 
him, I recollect now ; and I 've no doubt she was put on by her lAd 
sharper of a father." 

" Mr.-Sedley was your very good friend, Sir," Dobbin interposed, almost 
pleased at finding himself growing angry. " Time was you called him 
hetiesr names than rogue and swinger. The match was of your making. 
George had not right to play fast and loose-^ — ■■ -." 

" Fast and loose ! " howled out old Osborne. " Fast and loose ! Why, 
hang me; those are the very words my gentleman used himself when he 
gave himself airs, last Thursday was a fortnight, and talked about the 
British army to his father who made him. What, it 's you who have 
been a setting of him up— is it? and my service to you, Captam, It's- 
you who want to introduce beggars into my family. Thank you for 
nothing; Captain. Marry her indeed — he, he! why should he? I warrant 
you she'd go to him fast enough without." 

" Sir,'-' said Dobbin, starting up in undisguised anger ; " no man shaUi 
abuse that lady in my hearing, and you least of all." 

" O, you 're a going to caQl me out, are you ? Stop, let me ring the 


belfor piitolB for two. Mr. George sent you here to insult his father, 
did'he P Osbonie said, pulling at the bell-9ord. 

• *' Mr. Osborne," said Dobbin, with a faltering voice, " it's you who are 
insulting the best creature in the world. You had best spare her. Sir, for 
she's your son's wife." 

And with this, feeling that he could say no more, Dobbin went away, 
Osborne sinking back in his chair, and looking wildly after him. A clerk 
came in, obedient to the bell ; and the Captain was scarcely out of the 
court where Mr. Osborne's offices were, when Mr. Chopper the chief clerk 
came rushing hatless after him. 

" For God's sake, what is it ?" Mr. Chopper said, catching the Cf^tain 
by the skirt. ** The governor 's in a fit. What has Mr. George been 

" He married Miss Sedley &ve days ago," Dobbin replied. "I was his 
groomsman, Mr. Chopper, and you must stand his friend." 

The old derk shook his head. " K that's your news. Captain, it 's bad. 
The governor will never forgive him." 

Dobbin b^ged Chopper to report progress to him at the hotel where 
he was stopping, and walked off moodily westwards, greatly perturbed as 
to the past and the future. 

When the Russell Square family came to dinner that evening, they found 
the father of the house seated in his usual place, but with that air of gloom 
on his face, which, whenever it appeared there, kept the whole circle silent. 
The ladies and Mr. Bullock who dined with them, felt that the news had 
been communicated to Mr. Osborne. His dark looks affected Mr. BuUock 
so far as to render him still and quiet ; but he was unusually bland and 
attentive to Miss Maria, by whom he sat, and to her sister presiding at the 
head of the table. 

Miss Wirt, by consequence, was alone on her side of the board, a gap 
being left between her and "Miss Jane Osborne. Now this was George^s 
place when he dined at home ; and his cover, as we said, was laid for him 
in expectation of that truant's return. Nothing occurred during dinner- 
time except smilmg Mr. Frederic's flagging confidential whispers, and the 
clinking of plate and china, to interrupt the silence of the repast. The 
servants went about stealthily doing their duty. Mutes at funerab could 
not look more glum than the domestics of Mr. Osborne. The neck of 
venison of which he had invited Dobbin to partake, was carved by him in 
perfect silence ; but his own share went away almost untasted, though he 
drank much, and the butler assiduously filled his glass. 

At last, just at the end of the dinner, his eyes, which had been staring 
at everybody in turn, fixed themselves for a while upon the plate laid for 
George. He pointed to it presently with his left hand. His daughters 
looked at him and did not comprehend, or choose to comprehend, the 
signal ; nor did the servants at first understand it. 

" Take that plate away," at last he said, getting up with an oath — and 
with this pushing his chair back, he walked into his own room. 

Behind Mr. Osborne's dining-room was the usual apartment which went 
in his house by the name of the study ; and was sacred to the master of 
the house. Hither Mr. Osborne would retire of a Sunday forenoon when 


not miaded to go to cMnh ; ud how pws tke monii^ m hk cdnttum 
leather chair, reading tbe paper. AeoofiiM of |^bzedbook-«aaea were hen, 
oontainiBgataBdardvoflE* 19 stout gilt bindiags. The **A]iiuttlB^iiteT/' 
the " Gentlenaa'fl Magione»" /' Blair't Sermmis^'' aad *' Bxam andSnapl- 
let." From year's end to year's end he never took obq of these vdaiaes 
£pon the ahetf ; bat there was ao member of the fEonilj that would dare 
for hie life to touch one of the books, expe|it upon dose rare Sundi^ 
etenings whea there was no dinner party, and whem the great scarlet BiUe 
and TncyetAiook were taken out fraok the comer where they stood beside 
his copy of the Peerage, and the servants b^ing rung up to Uie dioiug par* 
lour, Osborne read the er^iing s^rioe to his £unily in a knd grating 
pompous voioe. No nienber of the household, child or domestic^ ever 
entered that room without a certain terror. Here he checked the house- 
keepers acoQunts, and ovi^rhauled the butler's cellar-book. Hence he oould 
command, across the clean gravel court-yard, the back catranoe of the 
.atables with which one of his beUs communicated, and into this yard the 
coachman issued from his premises as into a dock, and Osborne swoire at 
him fnMU the study window* Four times a year MisB Wirt entered this 
apartment to get her salary ; and his daughters to receive their quarter]^ 
allowance. George as a boy had been horsewhu^ed in this ro(Mn many 
times ; his mother sitting side on the stair lisfemng to die cuts of the 
whip. 13ie boy was searodiy ever known to cary under the punishment ; 
the poor woman used tolbnfltte and kiss him secretly, and give him money 
to soothe him when he came out. 

There was a picture of Ihe fuaaaSfy over the mantel-piece, removed thither 
fiNmi the hmd, rooM a£ter Mrs. Osborne's ddef^ — George was on a poney, 
the elder sister hoidqi^ him up a bunch of flowers ; tiie younger led by 
her mother's hand; all with red cheeks and large red mouths^ simpering 
OA each other in the appreved faiuQy-portKa^ manner. The moUier lay 
under ground now, long sines forgotten — the sisters and brother had a 
hundred diffawnt interests of their own, and, fiuniliar still, were utt^ly 
estnnged from each other. Some few so(Hre of years afterwards, when aQ the 
parties represented are grown old, what bitter satire there is in those flaunt- 
ing chikliah family-pcHtaits, with their farce of sentiment and souling lies, 
and innoeenoe so sdf-eon^cious and self-satisfied. Osborne'a own stately 
portrait, with that of his great silver inkstand and ^rm^dkair, had takeuthe 
place of honour in the dimng-room, vacated by the famify-pieDe. 

To this study old Osborne retired then, greatly to the relief of the amall 
party whom he left* When the servants had withdrawn, they began to 
talk for a while volubly but very low ; then they went up stairs quietly, 
Mr. Bullodc aoccnnpanyii^ them steidthily on his creaking ahoes. He 
had no heart to . ait alone drinking wine, and so close to the terrible old 
gentleman in the study hard at hand. 

An hour at least after dark, the butler, not having zeeeived any sum- 
mons, ventured to tap at his door and take him in wax candles and tea. 
The master. of the house sate in his chair, pretending to read the paper, 
and when the servant, placing the lights and refreshment on the table by 
him, retired, Mr. Osborne got up and locked the door after him. This 
time there was no mistaking the matter ; aU the house^iold knew that simie 


grent catastsopie irae geiig to loppeii viikii wbb lik^ ian^ to 
^ect Maftier George. 

J& tibe Jar^e sbuiiiig vdM^gan^r escn^one Mr. Osborne had a drawa: 
espeeiaily derotod to Us aon's affiant and papers. Here he Ic&pt all the 
doeoni^iiB relating to him eyer aiDce he had been a boy : hen were his 
prize oopy-booira aiMl drawing-boo^, a& bearing George's hand, and that 
of the master ; here were his firat letters in large round hand sendiBg his 
hiTc to papa and mama, and oonreying his petitions for a eake. Hisdear 
godpapa Bedley was more than once a^iiioned in them. Curses qniyered 
on oM Osborne's Imd Bps, and komd hatred and disappointment wriUied 
in his heart, as looking through aonse c^these papers he easoke on that name. 
They were afl marlced and doeketed, and tied wiHk red tape. It was — 
"FriMn Geoigy, requesting 5#., April 33, 18 — ; answered, April 25," — 
or "Gecffgy about a poney, October 13," — and ao fijrth. In another 
packet were " Pr. S.'s aeeounts "—" G.'s taOor'a bills and oatfit, drafts 
on me by G. Osborne, jun." See.,— his letters from the West Indies — his 
agent's letters, and the newspapers containing his commisflioa : here was 
a whip he had when a boy, and in a fkpex a locket containing his hair, 
whidk his mother used to wear« 

Tamisg one orar after another, and mnaiBg oi«r these memorials, the 
unhappy man passed many houra. Ills dearest Tsnities, asdiitions, hopes, 
had all been here. What pride he had in his boy ! He was the hand- 
flomest child evcsr seen. Eroybody sa^ he was Wan a m^lenum's son^ 
A royal princess had reaarkod him, and kissed him, and asked his name 
in Kew Gazdens. What city*maii oonld show sndk aaotherF Could a 
prince hafe been better (;ared for? Av^rthing that mcmey could buy had 
been hb son's. He used to go down on speedi-di^s with fonr h<nses 
and new liveries, and scatter new shillings among the boys at the school 
where George was : when he went wii^ George to the depdt of his regi* 
ment, hdore the boy embariced for Canada, he gave the officers sack a 
dinner as the Duke of Tork might hare sat down to. Had he eyer 
refused a biU when George drew one P There tbey were — paid without a 
word. Many a general in the army ODvldn'triob the horses he had! He 
had the diM bdbre his eyes, cm a hundred d^erent days when he remem- 
bered George — after dkuier, when he used to eome in as bold as a lord 
and drudL ^ his glass by has Cither's side, at the head d the table — on 
the poa^ at Brighton, when he deaxed the hedge and kept up with the 
hiintsman— on the day when he was nresemted to die Prince B^ent at 
Ae levee, when all Saint JaaMs's couldn't prodnoe a finer yoimg fellow. 
And this, tlus was the end dT all ! — to marry a bankrupt and ^ in the 
Isee of duty and fortune I What humihation and fuiy : what pangs 
of sidcening rage, balked ambition and love ; what wocmds of ooiiaged 
vanity, teandemess even, had this M woridHng now to saJffier under ! 

Haring exannned these papers, md pondered over this one and the 
other, in that bitterest of all helpless woe, with whidi miaerahle men think 
of happy past times — George's &ther toc^ the whdie of the documents out 
<d the drawer in whidi he had lu^t them ao loiig, a^ locked them into a 
writing-box, whidi he tied and seialed with his seaL Then he opened the 
book-ease, and took down the great red Bible we have spoken of-— « 


pompous book, seldom looked at, and shining all over with gold. There 
was a frontispiece to the volume, representing Abraham sacrificing Isaac. 
Here, according to custom, Osborne had recorded on the fly-l^,'and 
in his large clerk-like hand, the dates of his mianiage and his wife's 
death, and the births and Christian names of his children. Jane came 
first, then Qeorge Sedley Osborne, then Maria Frances, and the days of 
the christening of each. Taking a pen, he carefully obliterated Greorge's 
names from the page ; and when the leaf was quite dry, restored the 
volume to the place from which he had moved it. Then he took a 
document out of another drawer, where his own private papers were kept ; 
and having read it, crumpled it up and lighted it at one of the candles, 
and saw it. bum entirely away in the grate. It. was his will; which 
being burned, he sate down and wrote off a letter, and rang for his ser- 
vant, whom he charged to deliver it in the morning. It was morning 
already : as he went up to bed, the whole house was alight with the 
sunshine : and the birds were singing among the fresh green leaves in 
Russell Square. 

Anxious to keep all Mr. Osborne's family and dependants in good humour, 
and to make as many friends as possible for 6}eorge in his hour of adversity, 
William Dobbin, who knew the effect which good dinners and good wines 
have upon the soul of man, wrote off immediately on his return to his inn, 
the most hospitable of invitations to Thomas Chopper,' Esquire, begging 
that gentleman to dine with him at the Slaughter's next day. The note 
reached Mr. Chopper before he left the City, and the instant reply was, , 
that " Mr. Chopper presents his respectftd compliments, and will have the 
honour and pleasure of waiting on, Captain D." The invitation and the 
rough draft of the answer were shown to Mrs. Chopper and her daughters 
on his return to Somers' Town that evening, and they talked about mili- 
tary gents and West End men with great exultation as the family sate 
and partook of tea. When the girls had gone to rest, Mr. and IMis. O. 
discoursed upon. the strange events which were occurring in the governor's , 
family. Never had the clerk seen his principal so moved. When he 
went iti to Mr. Osborne, after Captain Dobbin's departure, Mr. Chopper 
found his chief black in the face, and all but in a fit :. some dreadful quar- 
rel, he was certain, had occurred between Mr. O. and the young Captain. 
Chopper had been instructed to make out an account of all sums paid 
to Captain Osborne within the last three years. ** And ia precious lot of 
money he has had too," the chief clerk said, and respected his old and 
young master the more, for the liberal way in which the guineas had 
been flung about. The dispute was something about Miss Sadley. Mrs. 
Chopper vowed and declared, she pitied that poor young lady to lose suob 
a handsome young fellow as the Capting. As the daughter of an unlucky 
speculiBitor, who had paid a very shabby dividend, Mr. Chopper had no 
great regard for Miss Sedley. He respected the house of Osborne before 
all others in the city of London : and his hope and wish was, that Captain 
George should marry a nobleman's daughter. The clerk slept a great 
deal sounder than Ms principal that night ; and, cuddling his children 
after breakfast, of which he partook with a very hearty appetite (though 
his modest cup of life was only sweetened with brown sugar), he set off in 



his best Sunday suit and fHlled shirt for business, promising his ad- 
miring wife not to punish Captain D.'s port too severely that evening. 

Mr. Osborne's countenance, when he arrived in the City at his usual 
time, struck those dependants who were accustomed, for good reasons, to 
watch its expression, as peculiarly ghastly and worn. At twelve o'clock 
Mir. Higgs (of the firm of Higgs & Blatherwick, solicitors, Bedford Kow,) 
called by appointment, and was ushered into the governor's private room, 
and closeted there for more than an hour. At about one Mr. Chopper 
received a note brought by Captain Dobbin's man, and containing an 
inclosure for Mr. Osborne, which the clerk went in and delivered. A 
short time afterwards Mr. Chopper and Mr. Birch, the next clerk, were 
summoned, and requested to witness a paper. " I've been making a new 
will," Mr. Osborne said, to which these gentlemen appwided their names 
accordingly. No conversation passed. Mr. Higgs looked exceedingly 
grave as he came into the outer rooms, and very hard in Mr. Chopper's 
tace ; but there were not any explanations. It was remarked that Mr. 
Osborne was particularly quiet and gentle all day, to the surprise of 
those who had augured ill from his darkling demeanour. He called no 
man names that d^y, and was not heard to swear once. He left business 
early ; and before going away, summoned his chief clerk once more, and 
having given him general instructions, asked him, after some seeming 
hesitation and reluctance to speak, if he knew whether Captain Dobbin 
was in town ? 

Chopper said he believed he was. Indeed both of them knew the fact 

206 tAiFrrr yaib. 

OslMniie tMka letter directed to that effieer, and, gvmg it to the deit, 
requested tlie latter to driiver it iat» Do^tmi^a own hands inHnedtatel^. 

" And now Qbofper,^ says he, taking his hat, and with a strange look, 
**my mind will be easy." Exactly as the clock struck two, (there was no 
doubt an appointment between the pair,) Mr. Frederick Bullock called, 
and he and Mr. Osborne walked 'Wriy together. 

The Colonel of the — th reginieat, in which Messieurs Dobbin and Os- 
borne had companies, was an oldi gcaaal who had made his iurst campaign 
under Wolf at Quebec, and was knig since qaaie too old and feeble for 
command ;. but he took some iaIeiMi in the regiment of which he was the 
nominal head, and made iwImp of tM young officers welcome at his table, 
a kind of hospitality whick I believe it not altogether common amongst 
his brethren of the present day. Csp4«in Dobbin was an especial favourite 
of this old General. Doblnt wm iWMd in the literature of his profession, 
and could talk about the gieal IMknc and the Empress Queen and their 
wars almost as well as the Gcaeral himself, who wm indifferent to the 
triumphs of the present da|f, mad whose heart was wx& the tacticians of fifty 
years back. This officer enit a sammdM to DobbiB to come and breakfast 
with him, on the momsiig wKen M& Oaiionie altered his will and Mr. 
Chopper put on his best shift frifl, and thes isfonBed his young, favourite a 
couple of days in advance, af that whidi they were all expecting — ^a march- 
ing order to go to BelgiooL The oriter ftr^e regiment to hold itself in 
readiness would leave the Hoeae Giaards in a Sfff er two ; and as trans- 
ports were in plenty, they would p^ their rouie lifore the week was over. 
Eecruits had come in during the stay of the regiment at Chatham ; and the 
old General hoped that the regiment which had, helped to beat Montcalm 
in CanMEa,. and ta rovt Mr, Waehdngton on Long Idamdy weold prove 
itself worthy ol its histevieak reputation oa the oft-trodden hattle-groundb 
c^ the Low Counties. ** And so mj good fineady if ywi hnre asy e^Htirif 
la" said the cdd G«iiei8^ tiddii^ apindi of ssofTwitiihiet^eml^iDg'wldte 
old hand, and then peioliBg to ^ spot of hb robe ie ^^uoftikre xssxSm 
which his heart was slill feebly beating, **i£ yoa haire any f hilis to con- 
scde, or to bid fiffeweii to pafnt and iiiaH% er any wMl to m^ite, I veocnH 
mend you to set about yo«r buaineeee wx&ant dxky.'* With whic^ tiie 
General gave his ^VHiiig Mend a finger to dbake, and a good-nattured nod 
of his powdered and pig-tailed head ^aad the door being closed upon Dol>« 
bin, sate down to pes a jWNl«^(he was exeeedagly tob of las !£^ch} to 
Mademoisdle Aai&aidiB of -His Mary's Thealie.. 

This news made Bobbin gnnre, and he thou^iol onrfriende at Bdghtoiiy 
and then he was ashained ^ hioudJ^ that Aimia was dbii^s the first thii^ 
in hi» thoughts, (ahvays before anybody — before fether azul mother, ^stcsre 
and duty-~always at wakiag and sleeping indeed, and alik divp long) r and 
returning to his hotel, he sent off a baoef note to Mv. Osbcmie aeqwantnig 
him wifch the infonnaticm whddi he had received, and whidi might tei^ 
feurth^, he hoped,^ to bring about a reconealiafeion with George. 

This note, dispatdied bf the same messenger who had carried the in- 
vitation to Chopper on the previous day, alarmed the worthy ^»k ne* a 
little. It was indosed io him, and asr he <^aied the letter he trembled 
lest the dinner should be put off on which he was calculating. Uis mind 

■. ..J^*^*'*' 

"" yr ,„|„i;. ';^^i 


(O^^:^^^ O ./ //^ /^/^U'^ /uu^fj-f ^if. /// - ^/ / ,^ ^ 



W8» ioexprcmMj re&ntd when he foimd thsi the esTdflpe was. onfy « 
reminder lor ymieU (*'! duiB expect yon i^ hstf-part^re," Gi^tim Dob- 
bin wrote). He wa» voy nradi mterailed about his ea^ojper's femily; 
but, que wmilez votes ? a grand dinner was of mine eoncent to \km than 
the affidrs of any o^r mortal. 

Dobbin was quite jostified IB repeating the Genciad'ainfon^ tottiy 
officers of the rcpmeaA whom he sfandd see in the eoone of his peregrina- 
natioBs; aceordm|^ he imported it to £n^;a S to bldc, whom he met at 
the agei^'^ and who, sadi was his nnlEtary ardour, went off mstantly to 
purckue a new swerd at the aceoutrement-nakcr's.. Here tihia yonng 
fellow, who though only seventeen years of age, and about sixty-five inehes 
high, with a constitution naturally rickety and much impaired by pvesn- 
ture bmmdy and wafer, had amn^mbtied eonra^ and alion'a heart, poised, 
tried, bent, and balanced a weapon such as he thou^t would do exeen* 
tion MQongsi Erendbaten!, SlKwtmg*^Ha,ha," and stam^nng his little feet 
with tremendous energy, he ddnrered the point twice or dodoe at Ciq[>tain 
Doltlnn, who parried & thrust laughingly witii Ina bamboo walldBg-stick. 

Mr. Sfcnbble, as nay be si^yposed from hds nze and tdendeniess, was of 
the li^ Bobs. Eas^n Spoony, on the contrary, waa a tail yooA, and 
belonged to (Captain Dobbin's) the Cfarenadier Company, and he tried ant 
a new benrnakin ca^iv under wyrii he looked savage beyood hu years. 
Then these two hi^ w«it off to the Slmghter's, sod having ordoed a 
fimoQS &ner, sate down and wrote off letters to the Imd anxiona parents 
at home— 4etter»lBlI of lofveand iMartiness, and plnek and bad speUing. 
Ah ! there wer« SMBiy aaxioas hearts beating throogh Eoghaid at tint 
time ; and mothers' pnytan and tears flowing in nnny hcsnesteads. 

Seeing yo«^ Stubbie engaged in eampositioii at one of the oofifee-roen 


tables at the Slaughter's, and the tears trickling down his nose on to the 
paper, (for the youngster was thinking of his mama, and that he might 
never see her again,) Dobbin, who was going to write off a letter to 
George Osborne, relented, and locked up his desk. " Why should I?" 
said he. " Let her have this night happy. . I'll go and see my parents 
early in the morning, and go doWn to Brighton myself to-morrow." 

So he went up and laid his big hand on young Stubble's shoulder, and 
backed up that young champion, and told him if he would leave off brandy 
and water he would be a good soldier, as he always was a gentlemanly 
good-hearted fellow. Young Stubble's eyes brightened up at this, for 
Dobbin was greatly respected in the regiment, as the best officer and the 
deverest man in it. 

" Thank you, Dobbin," he said, rubbing his eyes Tfith his knucUes, " I 
was just — just telling her I would. And, O Sir, she 's so Sam kind to 
me." The water pumps were at work again, and I am not sure that the 
soft-hearted Captain's eyes did not also twinkle. 

The two ensigns, the captain and Mr. Chopper, dined together in the 
same box. Chopper brought the letter from Mr. Osborne in which the 
latter briefly presented his compliments. to Captain Dobbin,, and requested 
him to forward the inclosed to Captain George Osborne. Chopper knew 
nothing further ; he described Mr. Osborne's appearance, it js true, and his 
interview with his lawyer, wondered how the governor .had sworn at 
nobody, and, espedally as the wine circled round, abounded in speculations 
and coi^ectufes. But these grew more vague with every glass, and at length 
became perfectly unintelligible. At a late hour Captam Dobbin put his 
guest into a hackney coach, in a hiccupping state, and swearing that he 
would be the kick — ^the kick — captain's friend for ever and ever. 

When Captain Dobbin took leave of Miss Osborne we have said that he 
asked leave to come and pay her another visit, and the spinster expected 
him for some hours the next day, when, perhaps, had he come, and had he 
asked her that question which she was prepar^ to answer, she would have 
declared hersetf as her brother's friend, and a reconciliation might have 
'been effected between George and his angry father. But though she 
waited at home the captain never came. He had his own affairs to pur- 
sue ; his own parents to visit and console; and at an early hour of the day 
to take his place on the Lightning coach, and go down to his friends at 
Brighton. In the course^ of the day Miss Osborne heard her father give 
orders that that meddling scoundrel, Captain Dobbin, should never be 
admitted within his doors again, and any hopes in which she may have 
indulged privately, were thus abruptly brought lo an end. Mr. Frederic 
Bullock came, and was particularly affectionate to Maria, and attentive to 
the broken-spirited old gentleman. For though he said his mind would 
be easy, the means which he had taken to secure quiet did not seem to 
have succeeded as yet, and the events of the past two days had visibly 
shattered him. 




ONDUCTED to the ladies, at tlie 
Ship Inn, Dobbin assumed a jovial 
and rattlhig manner, which proved 
that this young officer was be^ 
coming a more consummate hypo- 
crite every day of his Kfe. He- 
was trying to hide his own private^ 
feelings, first upon seeing Mrs^ 
George Osborne in her new con- 
dition, and secondly to njask the 
apprehensions he entertained as to- 
the effect which the dismal ne\WB- 
brought down by him would cer- 
tainly have upon her. 

"It is my opinion, George,** 
he said, "that the French Em- 
peror will be upon us, horse and foot, before three weeks are over, and 
will give the Duke such a dance as shall make the Peninsula appear mere 
child's play. But you need not say that to Mrs. Osborne, you know. 
There mayn't be any fighting on our side after all, and our business in 
Belgium may turn out to be a mere military occupation. Many persons 
think so ; and Brussels is full of fine people and ladies of fashion." So 
it was agreed to represent the duty of the British army in Belgium in this 
harmless light to Ainelia. 

Tliis plot being an*anged, the hypocritical Dobbin saluted Mrs. George- 
Osborne quite gaily, tried to pay her one or two compliments relative to 
her new position as a bride (which compliments, it must be confessed, 
were exceedingly clumsy and hung fire wofufly), and then fell to talking 
about Brighton, and the sea-air, and the gaieties of the place, and the 
beauties of the road and the merits of the " Lightning " coach and horses, 
— all in a manner quite incomprehensible to Amelia, and very amusing to 
Bebecca, who was watching the Captain, as indeed she watched every one 
near whom she came. 

Little Amelia, it must be owned, had rather a mean opinion of her 
husband's friend. Captain Dobbin. He lisped — ^he was very plain and 
homely-looking : and exceedingly awkward and ungainly. She liked him 
for his attachment to her husband, (to be sure there was very little merit 
in that), and she thought George was most generous and kind in extend- 
ing his friendship to his brother officer. George had mimicked Dobbin's 
lisp and queer manners many times to her, though to do him justice, he 



always spoke most higMy of his friend's good qualities. In her little day 
of triumph, and not knowing him intimately as yet, she made light of 
honest William — and he knew her opinions of him quite well, and 
acquiesced in them very humbly. A time came when she knew him 
better, and changed her notions regarding him : but that was distant 
as yet. 

As for Bebecca^ Captain Dobbin had not been two hours in the ladies' 
company, before she understood his secret perfectly. She did not like 
him, and feared him privately; nor was he very much prepossessed in her 
favouir. Se wa& so honest, that her arts and cajoleries did not aifect him, 
and ha shrank &om her with instinctive repulision. And, as she was by no 
means so. fac superior to her sex as to be above jeakmsj^ she disliked him 
.the more- &r his adoration of Amelia. NevestSleless, she was very 
xespeciM and cordial in her manner towards him. A friend to the 
Osbonuss I a friend to her dearest benefactors ! Sho vawed she should 
always love him sincerely : she remembered him quite well on the Vaux- 
hall night, as she told Amelia archly, and she made a little fun of him 
when the two* ladies went to dress for dinner. Bawdon Crawley paid 
scarcely any attention to Dobbin, looking upon him as a good-natured 
nincompoop^ and under-bred city man. Jos patronised him with much 

When George and Dobbin were alone in the latter's room, to which 
George had followed him, Dobbin took from his desk the letter which 
he had been charged by Mr. Osborne to deliver to his son. " It 's not in 
my father's hand- writing," said George, looking rather alarmed ; nor 
was it : the letter was from Mr. Osborne's lawyer, and to the fdlowing 

"Bbdpobj) Row, May 7, 1815. 


" I am commissioned by Mr. Osborne to inform you, that he abides by 
the determination which he before expressed to you, and that in conse- 
quence of the marriage which you have been pleased to contract, he 
ceases to consider you henceforth as a member of his family. This deter- 
mination is final and irrevocable. 

" Although the monies expended upon you in your minority, and the 
bilk which you have drawn upon him so unsparingly of late years, far 
exceed in amount the sum to which you are entitled in your own right, 
{being the third part of the fortune of your mother, the late Mrs. Osborne, 
and which reverted to you at her decease, and to Miss Jane Osborne and 
Miss Maria Frances Osborne;) yet I am instructed by Mr. Osborne to 
say, that he waives all claim upon yoiir estate, and that ^e sum of JB2000, 
4 per cent, annuities, at the value of the day (being your one-third share 
of the sum of JS6000,) shall be paid over to yourself or your agents upon 
your receipt for the same, by 

" Tour obediBnt Servt., 

«S. HifiGS." 

" P.S. — ^Mr. Osborne desirea me to say, once for all, that he decliues to 
receive any messages, letters,, ot communications from you on this or any 
other subject." 


"A pretty way you have managed the affair/' said George, looking 
siivagely at William Dobbin. " Look there, Dobbin," and be flung over 
to the latter hia paarent's letter. '* A beggar, by Jove, and all iu conse- 
quence of my d — d sentimentality. Why couldn't we have waited? A 
ball might have done for me in the course oi the war, and may still, and 
how will Emmy be bettered by being left a beggar's widow ? It was all 
your doing. You were never easy until you had got ma married and 
ruined. What the deuce am I to do with two tiunisand pounds ? Sudi 
a sum won't Uist two years. I 've lost a hundred and forty to Crawley at 
cards and billiards since I 've been down here. A pretty manager of a 
man's matters yow are, forsooth." 

'* There 's no denying that the position is a hard one," Dobbin replied, 
after reading over the letter with a blank countenance ; '*• and, as you say, 
it is partly of my making. There are some men that wouldn't mind changing 
with you," he added, with a bitter smile. " How many Captains in the 
regiment have two thousand pounds to the fore, think you? You must 
live on your pay till your father relents, and if you die, you leave your 
wife a hundred a year." 

" Do you suppose a man of my habits can live on his pay and a hun- 
dred a year?" George cried out in great anger. " You must be a fool to 
talk so, Dobbin. How the deuce am I to keep up my position in the 
world upon such a pitiful pittance ? I can't change my habits. I must 
have my comforts. / wasn't brought up on porri^ like MacWhirter, or 
on potatoes, like old O'Dowd. Do you expect mjf wife to take in soldiers' 
washing, or ride after the regiment in a luggage waggon? " 

" Well, well," said Dobbin, still good-naturedly, " we 'U get her a better 
conveyance. But try and remem'ber that you are only a dethroned prince 
now, George, my boy ; and be quiet whilst the tempest, lasts. It won't be 
for long. Let your name be meutabned in the Gazetjiti^ and I '11 engage 
the old father relenisi towards you." 

" Mentioned in the Gazette ! " Geoi^ anawerod. " And in what part 
of it ? Among the killed and womided netuaia^ aad at the top of the list, 
very likely.." 

" Psha ! It will be time enough to cry out when we are hurt„" Dobbin 
said. " And if anything happens, you know, G«orge, I have got a little, 
and I am not a marrying- man, and I shall not forget my godson in my 
>vill," he ad(fcd, with a smile. Whereupon the dispute ended, — as many 
scores of suck eonversationa between Osborne aad his friend hadi included 
previously — b^ td^ former dnlaring there ivoa na possibility of Miig angry 
with Dobbin lon^ and forging himt ^^aj ffauBfmlj after abmng him 
without canae.. 

" I say, Bwk};,,"' eried Eawdon QnRvfey out of his dressing-room, to 
liis lady, who ivoft attamig. herself fbc dinner in her own chamber. 

" What ? " said Becky's shriU voice. She was looking over her shoulder 
in the glass. She had put on the neatest and freshest white frock imagin- 
able, and with bare shoulders and a little necklace, and a light blue sash, 
^e looked the image of youthful innocence and girlish hc^pinate^ 

" I say, what '11 Mrs. O. do, when 0. goes out with the regunent ? " 
Crawley said coming into the room, performing a ducit on his head witili 




two huge hair-brkslies, and looking out from under his hair with admii-a- 
tion on his pretty little wife. 

" I suppose she '11 cry her eyes out," Becky answered. " She has been 
whimpering half-a-dozen of times at the vei-y notion of it, already to me.'* 

" You don't care, I suppose," Eawdon said, half angry at his wife's 
want of feeling. 

** You wretch ! don't you know that I intend to go with you," Becky 
replied. " Besides, you 're different. You go as General Tufto's aide- 
de-camp. fTe don't belong to the line," Mrs. Crawley said, throw- 
ing up her head with an air that so enchanted her husband that he stooped 
down and kissed it. 

" Kawdon, dear — don't you think — ^you 'd better get that — ^money from 
Cupid, before he goes ? " Becky continued, fixing on a killing bow. Slie 
called George Osborne, Cupid. She had flattered him about Ids good 
looks a score of times already. She watched over him kindly at dcarte of 
a night when he would drop in to Kawdon's quarters for a half-hour 
before bed-time. 

She had often called him a horrid dissipated wretch, and threatened to 
tell Emmy of his wicked ways and naughty extravagant habits. She 
brought his cigar and lighted for him ; she knew the effect of that manoeuvre. 


Imving. practised it in former days upon Rawdon Crawley. He thought 
her gay, brisk, arch, distinguee, delightful. In their little drives and 
dinners Becky, of course, quite outshone poor Emmy, who remained 
very mute and timid while Mrs. Crawley and her husband rattled away 
together,' and Captain Crawley (and Jos after he joined the young married 
people) gobbled in silence. 

Emmy's mind somehow misgave her about her friend. Rebecca's wit, 
spirits, and accomplishments troubled her with a rueful disquiet. They 
were only a week married, and here was George akeady suffering ennui 
and eager for others' society ! She trembled for the future. How shall 
I be a companion for him, she thought, — so clever and so brilliant, and I 
such a humble foolish creature ? How noble it was of him to marry me — 
to give up everything and stoop down to me. I ought to have refused 
him, only I had not the heart. I ought to have stopped at home and 
taken care of poor papa. And her neglect of her parents (and indeed 
there was some foundation for this charge which the poor child's uneasy 
conscience brought against her) was now remembered for the first time, 
and caused her to blush with humiliation. Oh ! thought she, I have been 
very wicked and selfish — selfish in forgetting them in their sorrows — 
selfish in forcing George to marry me. I know I 'm not worthy of him — 
I know he would have been happy without me — and yet — I tried, I tried 
to give him up. 

It is hard when, before seven days of marriage are over, such thoughts 
and confessions as these force themselves on a little bride's mind. But so 
it was, and the night before Dobbin came to join these young people — on 
a fine biilliant moonlight night of May— so warm 'and balxiy that the 
windows were flimg open to the balcony, from which George and Mrs. 
Crawley were gazing upon the calm ocean spread shining before them, 
while Rawdon and Jos were engaged at back gammon within— r Amelia 
couched in a great- chair quite neglected, and watching both these parties, 
felt a despair and remorse such as were bitter companions for that tender 
lonely soul. Scarce a week was past, and it was come to this ! The future, 
had she regarded it, offered a dismal prospect; but Emmy was too shy, so 
to speak, to look to that, and embark alone on that wide sea, and unfit to 
navigate it without a guide and protector. I know Miss Smith has a 
mean opinion of her. But how many, my dear Madam, are endowed 
with yoiir prodigious strength of mind ? i 

" Gad, what a fine night, and how bright the moon is !" George said, 
with a puff of his cigar, which went soaring up skywards. 

*/ How delicious they smeU in the open air ! ' I adore them; ' Who 'd 
think the moon was two hundred and thirty-six thousand eight hundred 
and forty-seven miles off?" she added, gazing at that orb with a smile. 
" Isn 't it clever of me to remember that ? Pooh ! we learned, it all at Miss 
Pinkerton's ! How calm the sea is, and h6w clear everything. I declare 
I can almost see the coast of France ?" and her bright green eyes streamed 
out, and shot into the night as if they could see through it. 

" Do you know what I intend to do one morning ?" she said ; " I find I 
can swim beautifully, and some day, when my Aunt Crawley's companion — 
old Briggs, you know — ^you remember her — that hook-nosed woman, with 

2U VAKimr FAIR. 

the long wisps of hair — when Btiggs goes out to bathe, I intend to dive 
under her awning, and insist on a reconciliation in the water. Isn't that 
a stratagem?" 

George burst out laughing at the idea of this aquatic meeting. " What's 
the row there, you two ?" Eawdon shouted out, rattling the box. 
Amelia was making a fool of herself in an absurd hysterical manner, and 
retired to her own room to whimper in private. 

Our history is destined in this Chapter to go backwards and forwards in 
. a very irresolute manner seemingly, and having conducted our story to 
to-moiTow presently, we shall immediately again have occasion to step back 
to yesterday, so that the whole of the tale may get a healing. As you be- 
hold at her Majesty's drawing-room, the ambassadors' and high dignitaries' 
carriages whisk off l&rom a private door, while Captain Jones's ladies are 
waiting for their fly : as you see in the Secretary of the Treasury's ante- 
chamber, a half-dozen of petitioners waiting pactiently for their audience, and 
called out one by one, when suddenly an Irish member or some eminent pas 
sonage enters the apartment, and instantly walks into Mr. Under-Secretary 
over the heads of all the people present : so in the conduct of a tale, the 
romancer is obliged to exercise this most partial sort of justice. Although 
all the little incidents must be heard, yet they must be put off when the 
gi-eat events make their appearance ; and surely such a circumstance as 
that which brought Dobbin to Brighton, viz. the ordering out of the 
Guards and the line to Belgium, and the mustering of the allied armies in 
that country under the command of his Grace the Duke of Wellington — 
such a dignified circumstance as that I say — ^was entitled to the pas over all 
minor occmTcnces whereof this history is composed mainly, and hence a 
little trifling disarrangement and disorder was excusable and becoming. 
We have only now advanced in time so fax beyond Chapter XXII. as to 
have got our various characters up into their dressing-rooms before the 
dinner, which took place as usual on the day of Dobbin's arrival. 

George was too humane or too much occupied with the tie of his neck- 
cloth to convey at once all the news to Amelia which his comrade had 
brought with him from London. He came into her room, however, hold- 
ing the attorney's letter in his hand, and with so solemn and important an 
air that his wife, always ingeniously on the watch for calamity, thought the 
worst was about to befal, and running up to her husband, besought har 
dearest George to tell her everything — lie was ordered abroad; there 
would be a battle next week — slie knew there would. 

Dearest George parried the question about foreign service, and with a 
melancholy shake of iiie head said, ^* No, Emmy ; it isn 't that : it *s not 
myself I care about : it 's you. I have had bad news from my father* 
He refuses any comnramcation with me ; he has flung us off ; and leaves 
us to poverty. / can rough it well enough ; but you, my dear, how wiD: 
you bear it ? read here. And he handed her over the letter. 

Amelia, with a loot of tender alai-m in her eyes, listened to her noble 
hero as he uttered the above generous sentiments, and sitting down on the 
bed, read the letter wMeh George gave her with such a pompous martyr- 
like air. Her face cleared up as she tead the docament, however. The idea 
of sharing poverty snd privaticm in company with the beloved object, is^ 


as we have before said, far from being disagreeable to a warm-?iearted 
womau. The notion was actually pleasant to little Amelia. Then, as usual, 
she was ashamed of herself for feefing happy at such an indecorous moment, 
and checked her pleasure, saying demurely, " O, George, how your poor 
heart must bleed at the idea of being separated from yoiir papa. 

" It does," said George, with an agonised countenance. 

"But he can't be angry with you long," she continued. "Nobody 
could, I'm sure. He must forgive you, my dearest, kindest husband. 
O, I shall never forgive myself if he docs not." 

" What vexes me, my poor Emmy, is not my misfortune, but yours," 
George said. " I don't care for a little poverty ; and I think, without 
vanity, I 've talents enough to make my own way." 

" That you have," interposed his wife, who thought that war should 
cease, and her husband should be made a general instantly. 

" Yes, I shall make my way as weU as another," Osborne went on ; 
" but you, my dear girl, how can I bear your being deprived of the com- 
forts and station in society which my wife had a right to expect ? My 
dearest girl in barracks ; the wife of a soldier in a marching regiment ; 
subject to all sorts of annoyance and privation ! It makes me miserable." 

Emmy, quite at ease, as this was her husband's only cause of disquiet, 
took his hand, and with a radiant face and smile began to warble that 
stanza from the favourite song of " Wapping Old Stairs," in which the 
heroine, after rebuking her Tom for inattention, promises "his trowsers to 
mend, and his grog too to make," if he will be constant and kind, and not 
forsake her. "Besides," she said, after a pause, during which she 
looked as pretty and happy as any young woman need, "isn't two thou- 
sand pounds an immense deal of money, George ?" 

George laughed at her naivete ; and finally they went down to dinner, 
Amelia clinging on George's arm, still warbling the tune of " Wapping Old 
Stairs," and more pleased and light of mind than she had been for some 
days past. 

Thus the repast, which at length came off, instead of being dismal, was 
an exceedingly brisk and merry one. The excitement of the campaign 
counteracted in George's mind the depression occasioned by the disin- 
heriting letter. Dobbin still kept up his character of rattle. He anaused 
the company with accounts of the army in Belgium, where nothing but 
f^tes and gaiety and fashion were going on. Then, having a particular 
end in view, this dexterous captain proceeded to describe Mrs. Major 
O'Dowd, packing her own and her Major's wardrobe, and how his best 
epaulets had been stowed into a tea canister, whilst her o^^i famous 
yellow turban, with the bird of paradise wrapped in brown paper, was 
locked up in the Major's tin codced-hat case, and wondered what effect it 
would have at the French king's court at Ghent, or the great military 
balls at Brussels. 

" Ghent! Brussels ! " cried out Amelia with a sudden shock and start. 
"Is the regiment ordered away, George, — ^is it ordered away ?" A look of 
terror came over the sweet snnling face, and she clung to Gieoi*ge as by an 

" Don't be afraid, dear," he said good-naturedly ; "it is but a twelve 
luour's passage. It wonH hurt you. You sliall go, too, Emmy.'* 


" 1 intend to go," said Becky, " I'm on the staff. General Tufta is a 
great flirt of mine. Is'nt he, Bawdon?" 

Eawdon laughed out with his usual roar. Willkm Dobbin flushed up 
quite red. ** She can't go," he said ; " think of the — of the danger," he ; 
was going to add ; but had not all his conversation during dinner-time 
tended to prove there was none P He became very confused and silent. 

" I must and will go," Amelia cried with the greatest spirit ; and Greorge, 
applauding her resolution, patted her under the chin, and asked all the per- 
sons present if they ever saw ^uch a termagant of a wife, and agreed that 
the lady should bear him company, " We '11 have Mrs. O'Dowd to chaperon 
you," he said. What cared she so long as her husband was near her ? 
Thus somehow the bitterness of a parting was juggled away. Though, 
war and danger were in store, war and danger might not befal for months 
to come. There was a respite at any rate, which made the timid little > 
Amelia almost as happy as a full reprieve would have done, and which even 
Dobbin owned in his heart was very welcome. For, to be pennitted to see 
her was now the greatest privilege and hope of his life, and he thought witli 
himself secretly how he would watch and protect her. I wouldn't have 
let her go if I had been married to her, he thought. But George was the 
master, and his frie^d did not think fit to remonstrate. 

Putting her arm round her friend's waist, Eebecca at length earned 
Amelia off from the dinner-table where so much business of importance 
had been discussed, and left the gentlemen in a highly exhilarated state, 
drinking and talking very gaily. 

In the course of the evening Bawdon got a little family-note from his 
wife, which although he crumpled it up and burnt it instantly in the candle, 
we had the good luck to read over Bjebecca's shoulier. " Great news," 
she wrote. ** Mrs. Bute is gone. Get the money from Cupid to-night, 
as he'll be off to-morrow most likely. .Mind this. — R." So when the little 
company was about adjourning to coffee in the women's apartment, Eaw- 
don touched Osborne on the elbow, and said gracefully,' " I say, Osborne, 
my boy, if quite convenient, I '11 trouble you for that 'ere small trifle." It 
was not quite convenient, but nevertheless George gave him a considerable 
present instalment in bank notes from his pocket-book, and a biU on his 
agents at a week's date, for the remaining sum. 

This matter arranged, George, and Jos, and Dobbin, held a council of 
war over their cigars, and agreed that a general move should be made for 
London in Jos's open carriage the next day. Jgs, I think,. would have 
preferred staying until Eawdon Crawley quitted JBrighton, but Dobbin 
and George overruled him, and he agreed to carry the party to to^vn, 
imd ordered four horses, as became his dignity. With these they set off 
in state, after breakfast, the next day. Amelia had risen very early in the 
morning, and packed her little trunks with the greatest alacrity, while 
Osborne lay in bed deploring that she had not a maid to help her. She 
was only too glad, however, to perform this office ^for herself. A dim 
aueasy sentiment about Bebecca filled her mind already ; and although 
they kissed each other most tenderly at parting, yet we know what 
Jealousy is ; and Mrs. Amelia possessed that among other virtues of her sex. 

Besides these characters who are coming and going away, we must 



remember that there were some other old fnends of om*s at Brighton ; 
IVIiss Crawley, namely, and the suite in attendance upon her. Now, 
although Kebecca and her husband were but at a few stones' throw of the 
lodgings which the invalid Miss Crawley occupied, the old lady's door 
remained as pitilessly closed to them as it had been heretofore in London. 
As long as she remained by the side of her sister-in-law, Mrs. But?; 
Crawley took care that her beloved Matilda should not be agitated by a 
meeting with her nephew. When the spinster took her drive, the faithful 
Mrs. Bute sate beside her in the carriage. When Miss Crawley took the 
air in a chair, IVIrs. Bute marched on one side of the vehicle, whilst honest 
Briggs occupied the other wing. And if they met Exiwdon and his wife 
by chance — although the former constantly and obsequiously took off his 
hat, the Miss-Crawley party passed him by with such a frigid and killing 
indifference, that Eawdon began to despair. 

" We might as well be in London as here," Captain Rawdon often said, 
with a downcast air. 

" A comfortable inn in Brighton is better than a spunging-house in 
Chancery Lane," his wife answered, who was of a more cheerful tempera- 
ment. " Think of those two aides-de-camp of Mr. Moses, the sheriff's- 

officer, who watched our lodging for a week. Our friends here are very 


stupid, but Mr. Joe and Captain Cupid are better campanioBS than. Mr. 
Moses's men, Eawdon, my love." 

" I wonder the writs haven't followed me down here," Bawdon cofr- 
tinned, still desponding. 

" When they do, we '11 find means to give them the slip," said dannUess 
little Becky, and further pointed out to her husband the great comfort 
and advantage of meeting Jos and Osborne, whose acquaintance had 
brought to Bawdon Crawley a most timely little supply of ready money. 

" It will hardly be enough to pay the inn bill," grumbled the Ghiardsman. 

" Why need we pay it ? " said the lady, who had an answer for every- 

Through Rawdon's valet, who still kept up a trifling acquaintance with 
the male inhabitants of Miss Crawley's servants' hall, and was instructed 
to treat the coachman to drink whenever they met, old Miss Crawley's 
movements were pretty well known by our young couple ; and Eebecca 
luckily bethought herself of being unwell, and of calling in the same 
apothecaiy who was in attendance upon the spinster, so that their inform- 
ation was on the whole tolerably complete. Nor was Miss Briggs, 
although forced to adopt a hostile attitude, secretly inimical to Eawdon 
and his wife. She was naturally of a kindly and forgiving disposition. 
Now that the cause of jealousy was removed, her dislike for Rebecca dis- 
appeared also, and she remembered the latter's invaiiable good words and 
good humour. And, indeed, she and Mrs. Pirfcin, the lady's-maid, and 
the whole of Miss Crawley's ^usehold, secretly groaned under the tyranny 
of the triumphant Mrs. ®nte. 

As often wiU be the case, that good but imperious woman pushed her 
advantages too far, and. hat isnccesses quite unmercifully. She had in 
the course of a few wee&s b«ni^ the invalid te «iich a state of helpless 
docility, that the pocir soul .^yidlSed herself <entiBdh^ to her sister's orders, 
and did not even dare tf><eoiiiplahL4«f iher slavery to Briggs or Firkin. 
Mi's. Bute measured out ffae glasses of wine ivrhdch Miss Crawley was 
daily allowed to take with irresistible accuoracy, gRUi% to the annoyance 
of Firkin and the ifantler, who found tSiemwilves (<lq!Rn¥ed of control over 
even the Sherry -bottle. She apportifliied the sweet-breads, jellies, 
chickens ; their quantity and order. Noght and nova and morning she 
brought the abominable drinks ordained by the BH^r, and made her 
patient swallow them with so affecting an obedience, tdbct Firkin said my 
poor Missus du take her physic like a lamb. She piseacribed the drive in 
the carriage or the ride in the chair, and, in a word, ^ound down the old 
lady in her convalescence iin such a way as only belongs to. your proper- 
managing, motherly, mord woman. & ever the patient faintly resisted, 
and pleaded for a little bit moFe dinner or & little iop less medicine, the 
nurse threatened her with instantaneous ^death, \dhen Miss Crawley in- 
stantly gave in. " She 's no sprit Mt in her,"' Firkdnoi remarked to Briggs ; 
" she aint ave called mt <& foift iSktsse three weeks." Finally, Mrs. Bute 
had made up her minfl %> dismiss the afcffiessofl inmest lady's-maid, Mr. 
Bowls the large confidential man, and Briggs herself, and to send for her 
daughters from the Rectory, previous to removing the dear invalid bodily 
to Queen's Crawley, when an -odious accident happened whdch caSied her 
away from duties so pleasing. The Reverend Bute Crawley her husband. 


riding home one night, fell with his horse and broke his collar-bone. Fever 
and inflammatory symptoms set in, and Mrs. Bnte was forced to leave 
Sussex for Hampshn-e. As soon as ever Bute was restored she promised 
to return to her dearest friend, and departed, leaving the strongest injunc- 
tions with the household regarding tjieir behaviour to their mistress ; and 
as soon as she got into the Southampton coach, there was such a jubilee and 
sense of relief in all Miss Crawley's house, as the company of persons 
assembled there had not experienced for many a week before. That very 
day Miss Crawley left off her afternoon dose of medicine : that afternoon 
Bowls opened an independent bottle of Sherry for himself and ibs. -Firkin : 
that night Miss Crawley and Miss Briggs indulged in a game of picquet 
instead of one of Porteus*s sermons. It was as in the old nursery-story, 
when the stick forgot to beat the dog, and the whole course of events 
underwent a peacefid and hn^py revolution. 

At a very early hour in the morning, twice or thriee a week. Miss Briggs 
used to betake herself to a bathing-machine, and disport in the water in a 
flannel gown, and an oilskin cap. Rebecca, as we have seen, was aware of 
this circumstance, and though she did not attempt to storm Briggs as she 
had threatened, and actually dive into that lady's presence and sui-prise 
her under the sacredness of the awning, Mrs. Rawdon determined to 
attack Briggs as she came away from her bath, refreshed and invigorated 
by her dip, and likely to be in good humour. 

So, getting up very early the next morning, Becky brought the 
telescope in their sitting-room, which faced the sea, to bear upon the 
bathing-machines on the beach ; saw Briggs arrive, enter her box, and put 
out to sea ; and was on the shore just as the nymph of whom she came in 
quest stepped out of the little caravan on to the shingles. It was a pretty 
picture : the beach ; the bathing-women's faces ; the long line of roclcs and 
building were blushing and bright in the sunsldne. Rebecca wore a kind, 
tender smile on her face, and was holding out her pretty white hand as 
Briggs emei^ed from the box. What coold Briggs do but accept the 
salutation ? 

" Miss Sh — , Mrs. Crawley," she said. 

Mrs. Crawley seized her hand, pressed it to her heart, and with a sud- 
den impulse, flinging her arms round Briggs, kissed her affectionately. 
"Dear, dear friend !" she said, with a tonch of such natural feeling, that 
Miss Briggs of course at once began to melt, and even the bathing-woman 
was mollified. 

Rebecca found no difficulty in engaging Briggs in a long, intimate, 
and delightful conversation. Every thing that had passed since the morn- 
ing of Becky's sudden departm'e from Miss Crawley's house in Park 
Lane up to the present day, amd Mrs. Bute's happy retreat, was discussed 
and described by Briggs. AU Miss Crawley's symptoms, and the particu* 
lars of her illness and medical treatment, were narrated by the coufldante 
with that fulness and accuracy which women delight in. About their 
complaints and their doctors do ladies ever tire of talking to each other ? 
Briggs did not on this occasion ; nor did Rebecca weary of listening. She 
was thankful, truly thankfid, that the dear kind Briggs, that the faithful, 
the invaluable Firkin, had been permitted to remain with their benefELctress 


tlirougli her illness. Heaven bless her ! though she, Rebecca, had seemed 
to act undutifuUy towards Miss Crawley ; yet was not her fault a natural 
and excusable one ? Could she help giving her hand to the man who had 
won her heart ? Briggs, the sentimental, could only turn up her eyes to 
heaven at this appeal, and heave a sympathetic sigh, and think that she, 
too, had given away her affections long years ago, and own that Bebecca 
was no very great criminal. 

" Can I ever forget her who so befriended the friendless orphan ? No, 
though she has cast me off,'* the latter said, " I shall never cease to love 
her, and I would devote my life to her service. As my own benefactress, 
as my beloved Kawdon's adored relative, I love and admire Miss Crawley, 
dear Miss Briggs, beyond any woman in the world, and next to her I love 
all those who are faithful to her. I would never have treated Miss 
Crawley's faithful friends as that odious designing Mrs. Bute had done. 
Rawdon, who was all heart," B«becca continued, " although his outward 
manners might seem rough and careless, had said a hundred times, with 
tears in his eyes, that he blessed Heaven for sending his dearest Aunty two 
such admirable nurses as her attached Firkin and her admirable Miss 
Briggs. Should the machinations of the horrible Mrs. Bute end, as she 
too much feared they would, in banishing everybody that Miss Craw- 
ley loved from her side, and leaving that poor lady a victim to those 
harpies at the Rectory, Rebecca besought her (Miss Briggs) to remember, 
that her own home, humble as it was, was always open to receive Briggs. 
Dear friend," she exclaimed, in a transport of enthusiasm, " some hearts 
can «^t?<?r. forget benefits; all women are not Bute Crawleys ! Though why 
should I complain of her," Rebe^jca added ; " though I have been her tool 
and the victim to ,her arts, do I not owe my dearest Rawdon to her?" 
Aiud Rebecca unfolded to Briggs aU Mrs. Bute's conduct at Queen's 
Crawley, which, though unintelligible to her then, was clearly enough 
explained by the events now, — ^now that the attachment had sprung up 
which Mrs. Bute had encom-aged by a thousand ai-tifices, — now that two 
innocent people Lad fallen into the snares which she had laid for them, 
and loved and married and been ruined through her schemes. 

. It was all veiy true. Briggs saw the stratagems as clearly as possible. 
Mrs. Bute had made the match between Rawdon and Rebecca. Yet, 
though the latter was a perfectly innocent victim, Miss Briggs could not 
disguise from her friend her fear that Miss Crawley's affections were 
hopelessly estranged from Rebecca, and that the old lady would never 
forgive her nephew for making so imprudent a marriage. 

On this point Rebecca had her own opinion, and still kept up a good 
heart. If Miss Crawley did not forgive them at present, she might at least 
relent on a future day. Even now, there was oidy that puling, sickly Pitt 
Crawley between Rawdon and a baronetcy ; and should anything happen 
to the former, all woidd be well. At all events, to have Mrs. Bute's 
designs exposed, and herself well abused, was a satisfaction, and might be 
advantageous to Rawdon's interest; and Rebecca, after an hour's chat 
with her recovered friend, left her with the most tender demonstrations of 
regard, and quite assured that the conversation they had had together 
would be reported to Miss Crawley before many hours were over. 


This interview ended, it became full time for Eebecca to return to her 
inn, where all the party of the previous day were assembled at a farewell 
breakfast. Rebecca took such a tender leave of Amelia as became two 
women who loved each other as sisters ; and having used her handkerchief 
plentifully, and hung on her friend's neck as if they were parting for ever, and 
waved the handkerchief (which was quite dry, by the way) out of window, 
as the carriage drove off; she came back to the breakfast-table, and 
ate some prawns with a good deal of appetite, considering her emotion ; 
and while she was munchmg these delicacies, explained to Bawdon what 
had occurred in her morning walk between herself and Briggs. Her hopes 
were very high : she made her husband share them: She generally suc- 
ceeded in making her husband share all her opinions, whether melancholy 
or cheerful. 

"You will now, if you please, my dear, sit down at the writing-table 
and pen me a pretty little letter to Miss Crawley, in which you'll say that 
you are a good boy, and that sort of thing." So Bawdon sate down, and 
wrote off, "Brighton, Thursday," and "My dear Aunt," with great 
rapidity: but there the gallant officer's imagination failed him. He 
mumbled the end of his pen, aiid looked up in his wife's face. She could 
not help laughing at his rueful countenance, and, .marching up and down 
the room with her hands behind her, the little woman began to dictate a 
letter, which he took down. 

"Before quitting the country and commencing a campaign, which very 
possibly may be fatal," 

" What?" said Rawdon, rather surprised, but took the humour of the 
phrase, and presently wrote it down with a grin. 

" Which very possibly may be fatal, I have come hither — " 

" Why not say come here; Becky, come here 's grammar," the dragoon 

" I have come hither," Eebecca insisted with a stamp of her foot, " to say 
farewell to my dearest and earliest friend. I beseech you before I go, not 
perhaps to return, once more to let me press the hand from wliich I have 
received nothing but kindnesses all my Kfe." 

" Kindnesses aU my life," echoed Bawdon, scratching down the words, 
and quite amazed at lus own fadHty of composition. 

" I ask nothing from you but that we should part not in anger. I have 
the pride of my family on some points, though not on all. I married a 
painter's daughter, and am not ashamed of the union." 

" No, run me through the body if I am !" Bawdon ejaculated. 

"You old booby," Rebecca said, pinching his ear and looking over to 
see that he made no mistakes in spelling — " beseech is not spelt with an a, 
and earliest is." So he altered these words, bowing to the superior know- 
ledge of his little Missis. 

" I thought that you were aware of the progress of my attachment," 
Rebecca continued : " I knew that Mrs. Bute Crawley confirmed and 
encouraged it. But 1 make no reproaches. I mamed a poor woman, and 
am content to abide by what I have done. Leave your property, dear 
Aunt, as you will. I shall never complain of the way in which you dis- 
pose of it. I would have you believe that I love you for yourself, and not 


for money's sake. T want to be reconciled to you ew I leaTe England. 
Let me, let me- see you before I go. A few weeks or months hence it may 
be too late, and I cannot bear the notion of quitting^ the country without a 
kind word of farewell from you.*' 

'' She won't recognize my style in thtd^^* said Becky. ** I made the sen- 
tences short and brisk on purpose." And this authentie mianvc was dis- 
patched under cover to Miss Briggs. 

Old Misfr Crawley laughed when Bnggs with great mystery handed her 
over this candid and simple statement. '* We may read it now Mrs. Bute 
is away," she said. '* Bead it to me, il^ggs." 

When Briggs had read the epistle out, her patroness laughed more. 
*' Don't you see, you goose," she said to Briggs, who. professed to be much 
touched by the honest affection which pervaded the composition, " Don't 
you see that Bawdon never wrote a word of it. He never wrote to me 
without asking for money in hi& life, and all his letters are fuU of bad 
spelling, and dashes, and bad grammar. It is that little serpent of a 
governess who rules him." They are all alike. Miss Crawley thought in 
her heari. They all want me dead, and are hankering for my money. 

" I don't mind seeing Bawdon," she added, after a pause, and in a tone 
of perfect indifference. ** I had just as soon shake himds with him as 
not. Provided there is no scene, why shouldn't we' meet? I don't 
mind. But human patience has its limits ; and mind, my dear, I respect- 
fully decline to receive Mrs. Bawdon — ^I can't support that quite" — and Miss 
Briggs was fain to be content with this half-message of conciliation ; and 
thought that the best method of bringing the cM lady mid her nephew 
together, was to warn Bawdon to be in waiting on tha CM, when Miss 
Crawley went out for her air in her chair. 

There they met. I don't know whether Miss Crawley had any private 
feeling of regard, or emotion upon seeing her old favourite ; but she held out 
a couple of fingers to him with as smiling and good-humoured an air, as if 
they had met only the day before. And as for Bawdon, he turned as red 
as scarlet, and wrung oif Briggs's hand, so great was his rapture and his 
confusion at the meeting. Perhaps it was interest that moved him : or 
perhaps affection : perhaps he was touched by the change which the illness 
of the last weeks had wrought in his aunt. 

'' The old girl has always acted like a trump to me," he said to his 
wife, as he narrated the interview, " and J felt, you know, rather queet, 
and that sort of thing. I walked by the side of the what-dy'e-cali-'em, 
you know, and to her own door, where Bowls came to help her in. 
And I wanted to go in very much, only — " 

" You dMfCt go in, Bawdon 1" screamed his wife. 

" No, my dear, I 'm hanged if I wasn't afraid when it came to the 

" You fool ! you ought to have gone in, and never come out again," 
Bebecca said. 

" Don't call me names," said the big guardsman, sulkily. " Perhaps I 
was a fool, Becky, but you shouldn't say so ;" and he gave his wtfe a 
look, such as his countenance could wear when angered, and such as 
wa» not pleasant to face. 

A Novai* "Viwmx ,a hbko. 2SS 

" Wt^ driest, to-iBonrow you mast, be on the look-ont, and go and 
see her, paind, wlietbev she ask& you or no/' Eebecca siiid^ trying to 
soothe, h9r ang^ yoke-matev On wliich he replied, that he wonld do 
exactly as he liked, and would just thank hei to keep, a dvil tongue in 
her head — and the wounded husband went away, and passed the forenoon 
at the billiard-room, sulky, silent, and suspicious. 

But before the night was oyer he was compelled to gire in* and own, 
as usual^ to his wife's superior prudence and foresight, by the most melan'- 
ckoly confirmation of the presentiments which she had regarding the 
consequem;es of the mistake which he had made. Miss Crawley must 
have had some emotion upon seeing him and shaking hands with him a£k^ 
so long a ruptm*e. She mused upon the meeting a considerable time. 
'' Bawdon is getting yery fat and old, Biiggs," she said, to her compa- 
nion. " His nose haa become red,, and he is exceedingly coarse in appear- 
ance. His marriage to that woman has hopelessly vulgarised him. Mrs. 
Bute always said they di^nk together ; and I have no doubt they do. 
Yes : he smelt. of gin abominably. I remarked it. Didn't you? " 

In vain Briggs interposed, that Mrs. Bute spoke ill of everybody : and, 
as far as a person in her humble position could judge, was an — 

"An artful designing woman? Yes, so she is, and she does speak itt 
of every one, — ^but I am certain that woman has made Bawdon drink. AH 
those low people do—" 

" He was very much affected at seeing you, Ma'am," the companion 
said ; " and I am sure, when you remember that he is going^ to the field of 

" How much money has he promised you, Briggs ? " the old spinster 
cried out,, working herself into a nervous rage — " there now, of course you 
begin to cry, I hate scenes. Why am I (dways to be worried ? Go and 
cry up in your own room, and, send Firkin to me, — ^no, stop, sit down and 
blow your nose, and leave off crying, and write a letter to Captain Crawley." 
Poor Briggs went and placed herself obediently at the writing-book. Its 
leaves were blotted aU over with relics of the firm, strong, rapid hand- 
writing of the spinster's late amanuensis, Mrs. Bute Crawley. 

" Begin ' My dear sir,' or * Dear sir,' that will be better, and say you are 
desired by Mrs. Crawley — no, by Miss Crawley's medical man, by Mr. 
Creamer, to state, that my health is such that all strong emotions would 
be dangerous in my present delicate condition — and thdt I must decline 
any family discussions or interviews whatever. And thank him for coming 
to Brighton, and so forth, and beg him not to stay any longer on my 
account. And, Miss Briggs, you may add that I wish him a bon voyage^ 
and that if he will take the trouble to call upon my lawyer's in Grays Inn 
Square, he will find there a communication for him. Yes, that will do ; 
and that will make him leave Brighton." The benevolent Briggs penned 
this sentence with the utmost satisfaction. 

" To seize upon me the very day after Mrs. Bute was gone," the old 
lady prattled on ; " it was too indecent. Briggs, my dear, write to Mrs. 
Crawley, and say she needn't come back. No — she needn't — ^and she 
shan't — and I won't be a slave in my own house — and I won't be starved 


and choked with pcfison. They all want to kill me — all — all" — and with 
this the lonely old woman burst into a scream of hysterical tears. 

The last scene of her dismal Vanity Fair comedy was fast approaching ; 
the tawdry lamps were going out one by one ; and the dark curtain was 
almost ready to descend. 

That final paragraph, which referred Bawdon to Miss Crawley's solicitor 
in London, and which Briggs had written so good-natm*edly, consoled the 
dragoon and his wife somewhat, after their first blank disappointment, on 
reading the spinster's refusal of a reconciliaticm. And it effected the pur- 
pose for which the old lady had caused it to be written, by making 
Eawdon very eager to get to London. 

Out of Jos's losings and George Osborne's bank-notes, he paid his 
bill at the inn, the landlord whereof does not probably know to this day 
how doubtfully his account once stood. For, as a general sends his bag- 
gage to the rear before an action^ Eebecca had wisely packed up all their 
chief valuables and sent them off under care of Geoi^'s servant, who 
went in charge of the tmnks on the coach back to London. Bawdon and 
his wife returned by the same conveyance next day. 

" I should have liked to see the old girl before we went," Bawdon said. 
" She looks so cut up and altered that I 'm sure she can't last long. I 
wonder what sort of a cheque I shall have at Waxy's. Two hundred — ^it 
can't be less than two hundred, — ^hey Becky ? " 

In consequence of the repeated visits of the gentlemen whose portraits 
have been taken in a preceding page, Bawdon and his wife did not go 
back to their lodgings at Brompton, but put up at an inn. Early the next 
morning, Bebecca had an opportunity of seeing them as she skirted that 
suburb on her road to old Mrs. Sedley's house at Fulham, whither she 
went to look for her dear Amelia and her Brighton friends. They were all 
off to Chatham, thence to Harwich, to take shipping for Belgium with the 
regiment — kind old Mi's. Sedley very much depressed and tearftil, solitary. 
Ketuming from this visit, Bebecca found her husband, who had been off to 
Gray's Inn, and learnt his fate. He came back furious. 

" By Jove, Becky," says he, "she's only given me twenty pounds !" 

Though it told against themselves, the joke was too good, and Becky 
burst out laughing at Bawdon's discomfiture. 

\1 ifsi- . . 



N quitting Brighton, our friend George 
as became a person of rank and fashion 
travelling in a barouclie with four horses, 
drove in state to a fine hotel in Caven- 
dish Square, where a suite of splendid 
rooms, and a table magnificently fur- 
nished with plate and surrounded by a 
half-dozen of black and silent waiters, 
was ready to receive the young gentle- 
man and his bride. George did the 
honours of the place with a princely air 
to Jos and Dobbin ; and Amelia, for the 
first time, and with exceeding shyness 
and timidity, presided at what George 
called her own table. 

George pooh-poohed the wine and bullied the waiters royally, and 
Jos gobbled the turtle with immense satisfaction. Dobbin helped him to 
it ; for the lady of the house, before whom the tureen was placed, was so 
ignorant of the contents, that she was going to help Mr. Sedley without 
bestowing upon him either calipash or cdipee. 

The splendour of the entertainment, and the apartments in which it 
was given, alarmed Mr. Dobbin, who remonstrated after dinner, when 
Jos was asleep in the great chair. But, in vain he cried out against the 
enormity of turtle and champagne that was fit for an archbishop. " I 've 
always been accustomed to travel like a gentleman," George said, " and, 
damme, my wife shall travel like a lady. As long as there 's a shot in the 
locker, she shall want for nothing," said the generous fellow, quite 
pleased with himself for his magnificence of spirit. Nor did Dobbin 
try and convince him, that Amelia's happiness was not centred in 

A while after dinner, Amelia timidly expressed a wish to go and see 
her mamma, at Pulham : which permission George granted her with some 
grumbling. And she tripped away to her enormous bed-room, in the 
centre of which stood the enormous funereal bed, * that the Emperor 
Halixander's sister slep in when the allied sufferings was here,' and put 
on her little bonnet and shawl with the utmost eagerness and pleasure. 
George was still drinking claret when she returned to the dining-room, 
and made no signs of moving. " Ar'n't you coming with me, dearest ?" 
she asked him. No ; the * dearest' had * business' that night. His man 
should get her a coach and go with her. And the coach being at the 


door of tlie hotel, Amelia made George a little disappointed curtsey afber 
looking vainly into his face once or twice, and went sadly down the great 
staircase. Captain Dobbin afber, who handed her into the yehicle, and 
saw it ^ve away to its destination. The very valet was ashamed of 
mentioning the address to the hackney-coachman before the hotel-waiters, 
and promised to instruct him when they got further on. 

Dobbin walked home to. his ' old quaiiers at the Slaughters', thinking 
very likely that it would be delightM to be in that hackney-coach, along ~ 
with Mrs. Osborne. G«orge was evidently of quite a different taste ; for 
when he. had. taken wineeBOugh, he'went off to half-price «t the play, to 
see Mr. :Kean. perform in Shylock. Captain Osborne was a great lover of 
the. drama, and had himself performed high^comedy characters with great 
distinetion in .«eva*al .garrison theatrical entertainments. Jos slept on 
juntil long a£ber dark, when he woke up with a start at the motions of 
his servant, who was removing and emptying tke decanters on the table ; 
and the hadmey-ooach stand was again put into requisitison for a carnage 
to oonvey this •stout hero to his.Iodgings aii4 bed. 

Mrs. Sedley, you, may be sure, clasped her daughter to her heaert with 
all maternal eagerness and affection, running out of tibe door as the carriage 
drew up before the little garden-gate, to welcome the weeping, trembling, 
young bride. Old Mr. Clapp, who was in his shirt-sleeves, trimming the 
^rden-plot,. shrank back alwrmed. 'The Irish servant-lass rushed up from 
the kitchen and smiled a * God bless you.* Amelia ccmld hardly walk 
along the flags aad,^p the st^s into the parlour. - 

Ho^ the floodgates were opened and mother and daughter wept, when 
they were together embracing each other in this sanctuary, may readily be 
imagined by every reader who possesses the least sentimental. turn. T\^hen 
don't ladies weep? At what occasion of joy, sorrow, or other business of 
Mfe ? and, filter such an event as a marriage, mother and daughter were 
surely at liberty to give way to a sensibility which is as tender as it is 
refreshing. About a question of marriage I have seen women who hate 
eadi other kiss and cry together quite fondly. How.muoh more do they 
feel when they love ! Good .moth»s are married over again at their 
daughters' weddings: and as for subsequent events, who- does not know 
how ultraHBatemal ^andmothers are ?-^in fact a woman, until she is a 
grandmother, does not often really know what to be a mother is. Let us 
respect Amdia.and her mamma whispering and whimpering and laughing 
and crying in the parlour and the twilight. Old Mi, Sedley did. Me 
had not divined- who was in the carriage when it drove up. He had not 
flown out to meet his daughter, though he kissed her very warmly when she 
entered the room (where he was occupied, as usual, with his papers and 
tapes and statements of accounts), and after sitting with the mother and 
daughter for a short time, he very wisely left the little apartment in their 

George's valet was looking on in a very supercilious manner at Mr. Clapp 
in his shirt-sleeves, watering his rose-bJishes. He toot off his hat, how- 
ever, with much condescension to Mr. Sedley, who asked news about his 
son»in-law, and about Jos's carriage, and whether his horses had been 
down to Brighton, and about that infernal traitor Bonaparty, and the war ; 



until the Irfah matd^serraiit came witli a plate imd a bottle of wine, firom 
^hick the old gentleman insisted npon helping the valet. He gave him a 

half-guinea too, which the servant pocketed with a mixture of wonder and 
contempt. " To the health of your master and mistress, Trotter," Mr. 
Sedley said, " and here's something to drink your health when you get 
home. Trotter." 

There were but nine daya'-paftt since AnHttia^ybad left that little cottage 
and home — ^and yet how far dff Ihe time 8eemad:!9ince she had bidden it 
farewell. What a gulf lay b^ween her andtlfaat past life. She could 
look back to it from her pNMQt standing-pla8e,^Mfid contemplate, almost 
as another being, the young nnsianiflid^girl abaofhied in her love, having 
no eyes but for one ^ecial>o]i)ject, receiving piMntal affection if not un- 
gratefully, at least indiffiranlitly, and as if ittfwere her due — her whole 
heart and thoughts beni?on'the accomplishniente6f:»ne desire. The review 
of those days, so latdiy;gone yet so far away, toajbhed her with shame ; and 
the aspect of the kiidEd mother fiUed her with tender remorse. Was the 
prize gained — the he«v«n of life — and the winner. still doubtful and im- 
satisfied? As ' his itero^tand heroine pass the matrimonial barrier, the 
novelist generally dngpsutlie curtain, as if the dran^^wre over then : the 
doubts and struggles ^f Jfife ended : as if, once lilnded in the marriage 
country, all were green arid pleasant 'there : and wife and husband had 
nothing but to link each other's arms together, and wander gently down- 
wards towards old age in happy and perfect fruition. But our little Amelia 
was just on the bank of her new country, and was already looking 
anxiously back towards the sad friendly figures waving farewell to her across 
the stream, frx)m the other distant shore. 




In iionour of the young bride's arrival, her mother thought it necessary 
to prepare I don't know what festive entertainment, and after the first 
ebullition of talk, took leave of Mrs. George Osborne for a while, and dived 
down to the lower regions of the house to a sort of kitchen-parlour 
(occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Clapp, and in the evening, when her dishes 
were washed and her curl-papers remored, by Miss Flannigan the Irish 
servant), there to take measures for tbe preparing of a magmficent orna- 
mented tea. All people have their ways of expressing kindness, and it 
seemed to Mrs. Seoley that a muf&i and a quantity of orange marmalade 
spread out in a little cut-glass saucer would be peculiarly agreeable refresh- 
ments to Amelia in her most interesting situation. 

While these delicacies were being transacted below, Amelia, leaving the 
drawing-room, walked up stairs and found herself, she scarce knew how, 
in the Uttle room which she had occupied before her marriage, and in that 
very chair in which she had passed so many bitter hours. She sank back 
in its arms as if it were an old friend ; and fell to thinking over the past 
week, and the life beyond it. Already to be lookiug sadly and vaguely 
back : always to be pining for something which, when obtained, brought 
doubt and sadness rather than pleasure : here was the lot of our poor 
little creature, and harmless lost wanderer in the great struggling crowds 
of Vanity Fair. 

Here she sate, and recalled to herself fondly that image of George to 


wliicli she had knelt before marriage. Did she own to herself how different 
the real man was from that superb young hero whom she had worshipped ? 
It requires many many years — and a man must be very bad indeed — 
before a woman's pride and vanity will let her own to such a confession. 
Then Eebecca's twinkling green eyes and baleful smile lighted upon her, 
and Med her with dismay. And so she sate for awhile indulging in her 
usual mood of selfish brooding, in that very listless melancholy attitude in 
which the honest maid-servant had found her, on the day when she brought 
up the letter in which George renewed his offer of marriage. 

She looked at the little white bed, which had been hers a few days 
before, and thought she would like to sleep in it that night, and wake, as 
formerly, with her mother smiling over her in the morning. Then she 
thought with terror of the great ^nereal damask pavilion in the vast and 
dingy state bed-room, which was awaiting her at the grand hotel in Caven- 
dish Square. Dear little white bed ! how many a long night had she 
wept on its pillow ! How she had despaired and hoped to die there ; and 
now were not all her wishes accomplished, and the lover of whom she had 
despaired her own for ever P Kind mother ! how patiently and tenderly 
she had watched roimd that bed ! She went and knelt down by the bed- 
side ; and there this wounded and timorous, but gentle and loving sbul„ 
sought for consolation, where as yet, it must be owned, our little girl had 
but seldom looked for it. Love had been her faith hitherto ; and the sad, 
bleeding, disappointed heart, began to feel the want of another consoler. 

Have we a right to repeat or to overhear her prayers P These, brother, 
are secrets, and out of the domain of Vanity Fair, in which' our story Hes. 

But this may be said, that when the tea was finally announced, our 
young lady came down stairs a great deal more cheerful ; that she did not 
despond, or deplore her fate, or think about George's coldness, or Eebecca's 
eyes, as she had been wont to do of late. She went down stairs, and 
lassed her father and mother, and talked to the old gentleman, and made 
him more merry than he had been for many a day. She sate down at 
the piano which Dobbin had bought for her, and sang over all her father's 
favourite old songs. She pronounced the tea to be excellent, and praised 
the exquisite taste in which the marmalade was arranged in the saucers. 
And in determining to make everybody else hc^y, she found herself so ; 
and was sound asleep in the great funereal paviHon^ and only woke up with 
a smile when George arrived from the theatre. 

For the next day, George had more important 'business' to transact 
than that which took him to see Mr. Kean in Shylock. Immediately on 
his arrival in London he had written off to his father'^ solicitors, signifying 
his royal pleasure that an interview should take place between them on 
the morrow. His hotel losses at billiards and cards to Captain Crawley had 
almost drained the young man's purse, which wanted replenishing before 
he set out on his travels, and he had no resource but to infringe upon the 
two thousand pounds which the attorneys were oovmissioned to pay over 
to him. He had a perfect belief in his own mind titot his father would 
relent before very long. How could any parent be obdunjte for a length of 
time against such a paragon as he was P If his mere past, and personal 


merits did not succeed in mollifying the father, George detennined tbai he 
would distinguish himeelf so prodigiously in the ensuing campnigu that 
the old gentleman must ^ye in to him. And if not? Bah I the woiid 
was before him. His luokmi^ change at cards, and there w«a a. deal of 
spending in two thousand poimAk 

So he sent off Amelia onoe more in a cwriiige to hex mamma, with stviot 
orders and carte blanche to the two ladies to pnaiune everything, requio 
Bite for a lady of Mrs. George Osborne's -faaluon, who wm going on a 
foreign tour. They had but one day to complete the outfit, aad it may be 
imagined that their business therefore occupied them pretty fully. Isk n 
carnage onoe more, bustling about from milliner to linendraper, eseorted 
back to the carriage by obsequious^ shopmen or polite owners, Mrs. Sedley 
was herself again almost, and sincerely happy for the first time since their 
miafortunes. Nor was Mrs. Amelia at all aboy« the pleasure of shopping, 
and ba^aining, and seeing and buying pretty things. (Would any man, 
the most philosophic, give twopence for a woman who was ?) She gave 
herself a little treat, obedient to her husband's ord^s, and. purchas^ a 
quantity of lady's gear, showing a great deal of taste and elegant discern- 
ment, as all the shopfolks said. 

And about the war that was ensuing, Mrs. Osborne was not much alarmed ; 
Bonaparty was to be crushed almo^ without a straggle. Margate paoketa 
ware sailing every day, filled with men of fashion and ladies of note, on their 
way to i&Hissels and Ghent. People were going not so much to a war as 
to a fashionable tour. The newspapers laughed the wretched upstart and 
swindler to scorm. Such a Corsicau' wretch as that withstand the armies 
of Europe and the genius of the unmoi-tal Wellington ! Amelia held him 
in utter contempt ; for it needs not to be said that this soft and gen<ie 
creature took her opinions from those people who surrounded her, such 
fidelity being much too humble-minded to think for iteelf. Well, in a wcHrd, 
she and her mother performed a great day's shopping, and she acquitted 
herself with considerable liveliness and credit on this her first appearance 
in the genteel world of London. 

George meanwhile, with his hat on one side, his elbows squared, and 
his swaggering martial air, made for Bedford Bow, and stalked into the 
attorney's offices as if he was lord of every pale-faced- clerk who was scorib- 
bling there. He ordered somebody to inform Mr. Higgs that Giqptaui 
Osborne was waiting, in a fierce and patronizing way, as if thQ p^kin of an 
attorney, ^ho had thrice his brains, fifty times his money, and a thousand 
times lus experience, was a wretched underling who should instantly leave 
all his business in life to attend on the Captain's pleasure. He did not 
see the sneer of contempt which passed all round the room> &om the first 
derk to the articled gents, from the articled gents to the ragged writers 
and white*faced runners, in clothes too tight for them, as he sate there 
tapping his boot with his cane, and thinking what a pared of miserable 
poor devils these were; The miserable poor devils knew all about his affairs. 
They talked about them over their, pints^f beer at their public-house clubs 
to other clerks of anights Ye Gods, what do not attorneys andattoroieys' 
clerks know in London 1 Nothing is hidden from their inqui8itk)n, andt 
their familiars mutely rule our dty. 


Perhaps Greorge expected, when he entfis»d Mr. Higgs's apartment, to 
find that gentleman commissioned to ^ete him some message of compro- 
mise or conciliation from his ii&er; perhaps his haughty and cold 
demeanour was adopted as a 8%n of his spirit and resolution : but if so, 
his fierceness was net by a chilling coolness and indifference on the 
attorney's p»t« iiutt rendered swaggering absurd. He pretended to be 
writaag at a paper, when the Captain entered. " Pray, sit down, Sir," 
flaid he, " and I will attend to your little affair in a. moment. Mr. Poe, 
get the release papers, if you please ;" and then he fell to writing again. 

P^e having produced^ those papa's j his chief calculated the amount of 
two. thousand, pounds stock ai the rate of the day; and asked Captain 
Ojiboina..whether he would take the sum in a cheque upon the bankers, 
Qr&whethfiar he should direct ih& latter- to purchase stock to that amount. 
** One of the. late Mrs. Osborne's trustees is out of town," he said indif- 
ferently, "but my client, wishes to meet your wishes, and have done 
with, the.bnsiness as quick as' possible/' 

" Give me a cheque. Sir," said the. Captain jvery surlily. " Damn the 
ahillii^ and halfp^ce, Sir^" he added, as the lawyer was making out the 
amount of the. draft ; and,, flattering himself that by this, stroke of mag- 
nanimity he had put the old qiiizto the blush, he stalked out of his office 
wil^ the papfBT in his pockets. 

''Thid; chs^ will be in gfioldn two years," Mr. Higg^ said to fflr. Poe. 

"Won't O, come round. Sir, don't you think ? " 
. " Won't the momimjent come round," Mr. Higga replied. 

"He's going it pretty fast," said the clerk. " He 's only married a 
weeky and. I saw him and some other military chaps handing Mrs. High- 
fi.yer to her carriagje after the play." And then another case was called, 
and Mr. George Osborne thenceforth dismissed from these worthy gentle- 
men s memory. 

The. draft was upon our friends- Hulker and Bullockvof Loiabard Street) 
to. whose* house> still thinking he- was doing business, George beat his 
way, and from whom he received his money. Fredaidc BiUlock, Esq*, 
whose yellow face was oy«r aledger^ atwhich sate a demure clei% h«{H 
pened to be in the banking-room wh^ George entered. His- yellow^ faee 
turned to a more deadly colour when he saw the Caj^ain, and. he- akuik 
back.guiltily into the inmost parlour. George, was too busy gloating av» 
the nuaney (for he had never had such a sum before), to mark the couor 
tenanee or flight of the cadaverous suitor of his sister. 

Eredv BuUook told old Osborne of his son's* appearance and: condueti 
" He Clone in as- bold as brass," said Frederick* " He haa diawn o«i 
ev«iy. shilling. How biog. will a few hundred pounds laat siu^-a chap 
as that? " Osborne swore with a great oath that he little cexed wjien or 
how^soon be spent it. Pred. dined every day in.Euss^ Square*: now. 
But altogether, George was highly. pleased with his day's- bttsin^a^ All 
hia own baggage anbd outfit was put into a state, of speedy pr^wation* 
and he paid Aiioydia's purchases- with cheques on his a^^kits, andmili tb9 
splendour of a lord^ 



HEN Jos's fine carriage drove up to 
the inn door at Chatham, the first face 
which Amelia recognized was the 
friendly countenance of Captain Dob- 
bin, who had been pacing the street 
for an hour past in expectation of 
his friends' arrival. The Captain, with 
shells on his frock-coat, and a crimson 
sash and sabre, presented a military- 
appearance, which made Jos quite 
proud to be able to claim such an 
acquaintance, and the stout civilian 
hailed him with a cordiality very 
different from the reception which 
Jos vouchsafed to his friends in 
Brighton and Bond Street. 

Along with the Captain was Ensiga 
Stubble ; who, as the barouche neared 
the inn, burst out with an exclamation 
of " By Jove ! what a pretty girl ! " highly applauding Osborne's choice. 
Indeed, Amelia dressed in her wedding-pelisse and pink ribbons, with a 
flush in her face, occasioned by rapid travel through the open air, looked 
80 fresh and pretty, as fully to justify the Ensign's compliment. Dobbin 
liked him for making it! As he stepped forward to help the lady out of 
the carnage, Siubble saw what a pretty little hand she gave him, and 
what a sweet pretty little foot came tripping down the step. He blushed! 
profusely, and made the very best bow of which he was capable ; to which 
Amelia, seeing the number of the — th regiment embroidered on the 
Ensign's cap, replied with a blushing smile, and a curtsey on her part; 
which finished the young Ensign on the spot. Dobbin took most kindly 
to Mr. Stubble from that day, and encouraged him to talk about Amelia 
in their private walks, and at each other's quarters. It became the fashion 
indeed among all the honest young fellows of the — ^th to adore and 
admire Mrs. Osborne. Her simple artless behaviour, and modest kindness- 
of demeanour, won aU their unsophisticated hearts; all which simplicity 
and sweetness are quit« impossible to describe in print. But who has 
not beheld these among women, and recognized the presence of all sorts 
of qualities in them, even though they say no more to you than that 
they are engaged to dance the next quadrille, or that it is very hot 
weatherP George, always the champion of his regiment, rose inmiensel|r 



in the opinion of the youth of the corps, by his gallantry in marrying this 
portionless young creature, and by his choice of such a pretty kind 

In the sitting-room which was awaiting the travellers, Amelia, to her 
surprise, found a letter addressed to Mrs. Captain Osborne. It was a 
triangular billet, on pink paper, and sealed with a dove and an olive 
branch, and a profusion of light-blue sealing wax, and it was written in a 
very large, though undecided female hand. 

" It 's Peggy O'Dowd's fist," said George, laughing. " I know it by the 
kisses on the seal." And in fact, it was a note from Mrs. Major 0*Dowd, 
requesting the pleasure of Mrs. Osborne's company that very evening to 
a small friendly party. " You must go," George said. " You will make 
acquaintance with the regiment there. O'Dowd goes iir command of the 
regiment, and Peggy goes in command of O'Dowd." 

But they had not been for many minutes in the enjoyment of Mrs. 
O'Dowd's letter, when the door was flung open, and a stout jolly ladyj in 
a riding-habit, followed by a couple of officers of Ours, entered the room. 

2M VANiarp TOiB;. 

" Sure, I couldn't stop till tay-time. Present me, Garge, my dear fdlowj 
to your lady. Madam, I 'm deloighted to see ye ; aad to present, to you 
me husband, Meejor O'Dowd ;" and witb. this, the jolly lady in the lidin^r 
habit grasped Amelia's hand very warmly, and the latter lakAW at once 
that the lady was before her whom her hu^and had so often laughed, ai. 
" You've often heard of me from that husband of yoursj" said. the lady 
with great vivacity. 

" You 've often heard of her," echoed her husband, .the M^jon 

Amelia .answered, smiling; '^that she had." 

"And small good he 's told you of me," Mrs. O'Dowd replied; adding 
that " GLeorge was a wicked divvle." 

" That I '11 go bail for," said the MtgcNr, trying to lockha&mn^^wAiA 
George laughed; and Mrs. O'Dowd, with a tap of. her whip*, told the 
M^jor to be quite ; and then requeated. to be pi!MGn4«d in. form to Mrs. 
Captain Osborne. 

" This, n:^ ^daac," said Geovge with great gravity, " is my very good^ 
]diid,.iiBd exodlent friend, Auridia Margaretta, otherwise called £e^y." 

" Faith, you 're right," interposed the Major. 

" Othei-wise called Peggy, lady of Major Michael O'Dowd of our regi- 
ment, and daughter of Pitzjurld Ber'sford de Burgo Malony of Glen- 
malony. County Kildarci" 

" AJad Muryan Squeer, Doblin," said the lady with cahn superiority. 

" And Muryan Square, sure enough," the Major whispered. 

"'Twas theret ye coorted me, Meejor, dear," the lady said; and the 
Major assented to this as to every other .proposition whidi was made 
generally in company. 

Major O'Dowd, who hadierved his sovereignid every quarterof the world, 
and had paid for every -stepriiBjhis profession by some more than equiva- 
lent act of damB^^and^gjoHantry, was the most modftBt, silent, sheep-faced 
and meek of little men, and as obedient to his: wofi^as if he had been her 
tay-boy . At the mess-ttisle he satesilently, and idranE a great deal. When 
full of liquor, haereeled silently homfii. Whenifhe spoke, it was -to agree 
with everybodyA/ott^««ry conceivahlippiiit; and he, passed through life in 
perfect ease and good humour; TIBb hottest; suns o^ India never heated 
his temper; and the Walch6renag^( never shook it. He walked up to a 
battery with. just as much indifferencerta to a dinner-table; had dined on 
horse-flesh and turtle with equal. reliiah and appetite; and had an old 
mother, Mfs. O'Dowd of O'Dowdatowa indeed, whom he hadidiever dis- 
obeyed but when he ran away and enlisted, and when he pjiraiBted in 
marrying that odious Peggy Malony* . 

Peggy was one of ^ve sisters, and eleven children of the noble house 
of GLenmalony ; . but her husband, thiong^ her own couan, was- of the 
mother's side, and so had not the inestimable advantage of beioi^allied to 
the Malonies,-whom she believed to. bbw the most famous fan^ in the 
world. Having triedinine seasonaaaik^IBltUaiir.and.two at>B&lth and Chel- 
tenham, and not finding a partner for life. Miss Malony ordered her 
cousin Mick to marry her when she was about thirty-three years of age ; 
and the honest fellow obeying, carried her off to the West Indies to preside 
over the ladies of the — ^th regiment, into which he had just exchanged. 


Before Mra^ O'Dowd was half an houx- in Asielk's^^ozi iadflecL in^anybody 
else's) company, tliis- amiable lady told all her birth and pedigree to her 
new friend. '' My dsar/' said she, good*^naturedly, "it was my intention 
that Qarge should be a brother of my own, and my sister. Qlorvina^ would 
have» suited him entirely. But as bygones are bygones, and he. waa 
engaged toyourself^ w^, I'm determin^.to take you as &sisto instead, 
and to. look upon you as such,, and to love you ajs one of the. familyw 
Faith, you 'ye got such a lUce good«-na^ured face and way widg. yoo^ that 
I 'm sure we '11 agree ; and that ypu '11 be an addition to our family any- 

" 'Deed and she will," said' O'Bowd with an appnmng jair, and Anu^ 
felt .herself not a little, amused and grateful to be thus suddenly iniaroduced 
to' SO' large & party of relations^. 

" We 'ns all good fdlowa here/' the Major's lady continued. "There's 
not a regimeBt in the sorvioe where you'll find a more muted soeietynor 
a more agreeable meas-KBUL. These 's no cpwinroHing,. bickering ^sland* 
thering, nor small talk amongst tw. We all Im fladtciher." 

" Especially Mrs. Magenia," said George, laughing^ 

" Mrs. Captain Magenis and me haa made up, though her treatment of 
me would bring me gray hairs with sonrow to the grave." 

" And you with such a beautiful front of black, Peggy my dear," the 
Major cried. 

" Hould your tongue, Mick,. you booby: Them husbands.are always in 
the way, Mrs. Osborne, my dear ; and as for my Mick-, I often tell him he 
should never open his mouth but to give the word of command, or to put 
meat and diink into it. I '11 tell you about the regiment,. and warn you 
when we 're alone. Introduce me to your brother now. ; sure he 's ami^ty 
fine man, and reminds me of me cousin Dan Malony (Malony of Ballyma* 
lony, my dear, you know, who marked Ophalia Scully, of Oystllerstown, 
owiu cousin to Lord Foldoody). Mr. Sedley, Sir, I'm deloighted to be 
made known te ye. I suppose you 'U dine^ at the mesS; tO'^y* (Mind 
that divvle of a docther, Mick, and whatever ye du, keep yourself .sober for 
me party this evening.) 

'*It's the 150th gives us a farex^ll dinner, my love," interposed; the 
Major, " but we '11 easy get a card for Mr. Sedley." 

*' Bun Simple (Ensign Simple, of Ours, my dear Amelia. I forgot to 
introjuice him to ye.) Bun in a hurry, with Mrs. Major O'Dowd's 
compliments to Colonel Tavish, and Captain Osborne has brought his 
brothemlaw down, and will bring him to the 150th mess at fiife o'dook 
sharp — when you and I, my. dear, will take a snack here, if you like." 
Before Mrs. O'Dowd's speech was concluded, the young. Ensign waa 
trotting down stairs on his commission. 

" Obedience is the soul of the army. We will go to our duty while 
Mrs. O'Dowd will stay and enlighten you, Emmy," Captain Osborne said; 
and the two Captains, taking each a wing of the Miyor, walked out < with 
that offioer, grinning at each other ov» his head. 

And, now having her new f&nd to hereelt; the impetuoua Mrs. O'Dbwd 
proceeded to pour out such a quantity of information as no po€« Uttle 
woman's memory could ever tax. itself to bear. She told Amdia athouaand 


particulars relative to the very numerous family of wliicli tlie amazed 
young lady found herself a member. " Mrs. Heavytop, the Colonel's 
wife, died in Jamaica of the yellow faver and a broken heart comboined, 
for the horrud old Colonel, with a head as bald as a cannon-ball, was 
making sheep's eyes at a half-caste girl there. Mrs. Magenis, though 
without education, was a good woman, but she had the diwle's tongue, 
and would cheat her own mother at whist. Mrs. Captain Kirk must 
turn up her lobster eyes forsooth at the idea of an honest round game, 
(wherem me fawther, as pious a man as ever went to church, me uncle 
Dane Malony, and our cousin the Bishop, took a hand at loo, or whist, 
every night of their lives). Nayther of 'em's goin with the regiment this 
time," Mrs. O'Dowd added. " Fanny Magenis stops with her mother, who 
sells small coal and potatoes, most likely, in Islington-town, hard by 
Iiondon, though she 's always bragging of her father's ships, and pointing 
them out to us as they go up the river : and Mrs Kirk and her children 
will stop here in Bethesda Place, to be nigh to her favourite preacher. 
Dr. Ramshom. Mrs. Bunny 's in an interesting situation — ^faith, and she 
always is, then — and has given the Lieutenant seven already. And 
Ensign Posky's wife, who joined two months before you, my dear, has 
quarl'd with Tom Posky a score of times, till you can hear 'em all over 
the bar'ck, (they say they're come to broken pleets, and Tom never 
accounted for his black oi,) and she'll go back to her mother, who keeps a 
ladies* siminary at Bichmond, — ^bad luck to her for running away from it ! 
Where did ye get your finishing, my dear P I had moin, and no expince 
spared, at Madame Flanagan's, at Byssus Grove, Booterstown, near 
Dublin, wid a Marchioness to teach us the true Parisian pronunciation, 
and a retired Major-General of the French service to put us through the 

Of this incongruous family our astonished Amelia found herself all of 
a sudden a member : with Mrs. O'Dowd as an elder sister. She was pre- 
sented to her other female relations at tea-time, on whom, as she was 
quiet, good-natured, and not too handsome, she made rather an agreeable 
impression until the arrival of the gentlemen from the mess of the 150th, 
who all admired her so, that her sisters began, of course, to find fault 
with her. 

" I hope Osborne has sown his wild oats," said Mrs. Magenis to Mrs. 
Bunny. " If a reformed rake makes a good husband, sure it 's she will 
have the fine chance with Garge," Mrs. O'Dowd, remarked to Posky, who 
had lost her position as bride in the regiment, and was quite angiy with 
the usurper. And, as for Mrs. Kirk ; the disciple of Dr. Eamshom put 
one or two leading professional questions to Amelia, to see whether she was 
awakened^ whether she was a professing Christian and so forth, and finding 
from the simplicity of Mrs. Osborne's replies that she was yet in utter 
darkness, put into her hands three little penny books with pictures, viz. the 
" Howling Wilderness," the " Washerwoman of Wandsworth Common,'* 
and the " British Soldier's best Bayonet," which, bent upon awakening 
her before she slept, Mrs. Kirk begged Anielia to read that night ere she 
went to bed. 

But all the men, like good fellows as they were, rallied round their 


comrade's pretty wife, and paid her their court with soldierly gallantry. 
She had a little triumph, which ilushed her spirits and made her eyes 
sparkle. George was proud of her popularity, and pleased with the 
manner (which was very gay and graceM though naive and a little timid) 
with which she received the gentlemen's attentions, and answered their 
compliments. And he in his uniform — ^how much handsomer he was than 
any man in the room ! . She felt that he was affectionately watching her, 
and glowed with pleasure at his kindness. " I will make all his friends 
welcome," she resolved in her heart. " I will love all who love him. I 
will always try and be gay and good-humoured and make his home 

The regiment indeed adopted her with acclamation. The Captains 
approved, the Lieutenants applauded, the Ensigns admired. Old Cutler 
the Doctor made one or two jokes, which, being professional, need not be 
repeated ; and Cackle, the Assistant M.D. of Edinburgh, condescended to 
examine her upon leeterature, and tried her with his three best French 
quotations. Young Stubble went about from man to man whispering, 
*' Jove, isn't she a pretty gal? " and never took his eyes off her except 
when the negus ciame in. 

As for Captain Dobbin, he never so much as spoke to her during the 
whole evening. But he and Captain Porter of the 150th took home Jos 
to the hotel, who was in a veiy maudlin state, and had told his tiger-hunt 
story with great effect, both at the mess-table ; and at the soiree, to Mrs. 
O'Dowd in her turban and bird of paradise. Having put the Collector 
into the hands of his servant, Dobbin loitered about, smoking his cigar 
before the inn door. George had meanwhile very carefully shawled his 
wife, and brought her away from Mrs. O'Dowd's after a general hand- 
shaking from the young officers, who accompanied her to the fly, and 
cheered that vehicle as it drove off. So Amelia gave Dobbin her little 
hand as she got out of the carriage, and rebuked him smilingly for not 
having taken a.ny notice of her all night. 

The Captain continued that deleterious amusement of smoking, long 
after the inn and the street were gone to bed. He watched the lights 
vanish from George's sitting-room windows, and shine* out in the bed- 
room close at hand. It was ahnost morning when he returned to his 
own quarters. He could hear the cheering from the ships in the river, 
where the transports were already taking in their cargoes preparatory to 
dropping down the Thames. 



ILE regiment witli its offieen was 
to l»e tnuuported in ships pro- 
vided by EQs Majesty's goveror 
ment for the occasion ^and in two 
days after the fe^iveassembly ^ 
Mrs. O'Dowd's i^artments, in 
the midst of <;heering firom all the 
Eaat liidiarshipsin the river, and 
the military on i^Kore, the hand 
playing * God save the.King/ the 
officers waving their hats, and 
the crews huxrahmg galkntly, 
the transports wcmt down the 
river and proceeded under eoav- 
voy to Ostend. Meanwhile tbe 
gallant Jos had . agreed to escort 
his sister 'and tiie lifejor's wile, 
the bulk of whose goods and 
chattels, including the famous 
bird of paradise and turban, were 
with the regimental baggage : ^so 
that our two h^^es drove 
pretty much unencumbered to Bamsgate, where there were plenty of 
packets plying, in one of which they had a speedy passage to Q^tend. 

That period of Jos^s life which now ensued was so full of incident, that 
it served him for conversation for many years after, and even the tiger- 
himt story was put aside for snore stirring narratives which he had to tdl 
about the great campaign of Waterloo. As soon as he had agreed to 
escort his sister abroad, it was remarked that he ceased shaving his upper 
lip. At Chatham he followed the parades and drills with great assiduity. 
He listened with the utmost attention to the conversation of his brother 
officers, (as he called them in after days sometimes,) and learned as many 
military names as he could. In these studies the excellent Mrs. O'Dowd 
was of great assistance to him ; and on the day finally when they embarked 
on board the Lovely Eose which was to carry them to their destination, he 
made his appearance in a braided frock-coat and duck trowsers, with a 
foraging cap ornamented with a smart gold band. Having his carriage 
with him, and informing everybody on board confidentially that he was 
going to join the Duke of Wellington's army, folks mistook him for a great 


Ullage, a oomnissary-general, or .a goTemnent oonrier at the Toy 

He 4iilfered kojgdy <m the voyage, ckaring whieh-ilie ladies^were UoMPue 
pxoBteate:; but Amelia was brought to life again 4is'^ the paeket iiiiide 
Ostaad, by ihe ai^t of tiie traos^rts conveying ^r xegimoit, nrkkth 
enteied the harbour ahxiost at the same time' with 4he Lovely 'Bose. 
Jos wont m a ooBapsed state to aca imi, while Oaptain Dobbin «8oaEttd tite 
ladies, and then busied himself in freeing Jos*s canoage and iaggage from 
the «hip^8&d>theiciiBtomh6n8e,^for Mr. Jod was at present* without a ser- 
vant, Oi^me's num and his own pampered, menial honng com pi led 
together at Chatham, und n^fused point-Uank to cross the water. This 
fcivolt,'.whiDhi9Bmev«ry suddenly, and on the last ilsy, so alarmed Mr. 
fiedley, junior, that he was on the pdnt of grnng up ijie expedition, but 
Oaptain Dobl^ (fdio made himself immensely oifidous in :tke business, 
Josfsait^, sated ium and laughed at him scMmdly : the mnstaohioswere 
groNvn /in adrBnceji'snd Jos fuaally was persuaded 'to ranbarlc. iln phioe 
of the <well->bred and welli^fed Lcmdon domesties, wIk) could only speak 
English, Bobbin psoenred for Jos's party a swarthy httfce Beigien servMit 
who could' i^pcak: no. language at all; but who by his bustling behaviomr, 
end byiuarsriaUy^addreaaiBg Mr.fiedfceyas '*' Mylord," speedily aequivsd 
that.gentkBnan's fafour. Tmtes are altered at Ostend now ; of the Britons 
who go tinther, very ftw look like lords, or. act like those members of our 
hereditary aaatfMaES^. Tb^ seem for the most part.^hid)by in attire, 
cUagy of liam, lofcrs of bilhacrds ^and boandy, and cigars and greasy 

.But it may^he aaid ras a:Tidey that every Bngiirianan in the < Duke of 
WellingtDn;^^ %anny rpaid his way. The remembnnce of sndli a hid 
"Bordy beaomes a notion <rf shopkeepers. It was a blessing for a oom- 
iMrce-bying'«oiiiitry:to beoTemm by such an army of customers : and 
to have such creditable warriors to feed. And the country which they 
came to protect is not military. For a long period of history they have 
let other people fight there. When the present writer went to survey 
with eagle glance the field of Waterloo, we asked the conductor of the 
diligence, a portly warlike-looking-veteran, whether he had been at the 
battle. " Fas si Mte " — such an answer and sentiment as no Frenchman 
would own to — was his reply. ^Bat on the other hand, the postilion who 
drove us was a Fiacount, a son of some baakropt Imperial General, who 
accepted a pennyworth jof beer on the Tpad. .Xke moral is surely a 
good one. 

This flat, flourishing,'«0y :«eii]itry never could thave looked more rich 
and prosperous, than in ^that opening summer iff -1815, when its green 
fields and quiet cities«were enlivened by multi^iiiid. red-coats : when its 
wide chausaeea swanned with bniiiaiit Enginh equipages: when its 
great canal-boats, gliding by ri^ ^pastures and feasant quaint old vil- 
lages, by old chateaux lying amongst old trees, '•were all crowded with 
well-to-do English travelers : 'when the soldier who drank at the village 
inn, not only drank, buti^id his voore; and Donald the Highlander,* 

* This incident is mentioned in Mr. Gleig's recently published ** Story of the 
Battle of Waterloo." 



billeted in the Flemisli fann-house, rocked the baby's cradle, while Jean 
and Jeannette were out getting in the hay. As our painters are bent on 
military subjects just now, I throw out this as a good subject for the 
pencil, to illustrate the principle of an honest English war. All looked as 
brilUant and harmless as a Hyde Park review. Meanwhile, Napoleon 
screened behind his curtain of frontier-fortresses, was preparing for the 
outbreak which was to drive all these orderly people into fury and blood ; 
and lay so many of them low. 

Everybody had such a perfect feeling of confidence in the leader (for the 
resolute faith which the Duke of Wellington had inspired in the whole 
English nation was as intense, as that more frantic enthusiasm with which 
at one time the French regarded Napoleon), the country seemed in so per- 
fect a state of orderly defence, and the help at hand in case of need so near 
and overwhelming, that alarm was unknown, and that our travellers, among 
whom two were naturally of a very timid sort, were, like all the other multi- 
plied English tourists, entirely at ease. The famous regiment, with so 
many of whose officers we have made acquaintance, was toiled in canal- 
boats to Bruges and Ghent, thence to march to Brussels. Jos accompa- 
nied the ladies in the public boats ; the which all old travellers in Flanders 
must remember for the luxury and accommodation they afforded. So 
prodigiously good was the eating and drinking on board these sluggish 
but most con^ortable vessels, that there are legends extant of an English 
traveller who coming to Belgium for a week, and travelling in one of these 
boats, was so delighted with the fare there that he went backwards and 
forwards from Ghent to Bruges perpetually until the raihroads were 
invented, when he drowned himself on the last trip of the passage-boat. 
Jos's death was not to be of this sort, but his comfort was exceeding, and 
Mrs. O'Dowd insisted that he only wanted her sister Glorvina to make 
his happiness complete. He sate on the roof of the cabin all day 


drinkiiig Flemish beer, shouting for Isidor his servant, and talking gal- 
lantly to the ladies. 

His courage was prodigious. " Boney attack ««/" he cried. "My 
dear creature, my poor Emmy, don't be frightened. There 's no danger. 
The allies will be in Paris in two months, I tell you : when 1*11 take you 
to dine in the Palais Eoyal, by Jove. There are three hundred thousand 
Eooshians, I tell you, now entering France by Mayence and the Ehine — 
three hundred thousand under Wittgenstein and Barclay de Tolly, my poor 
love. You don't know military aflGairs, my dear. I do, and I tell you 
there's no infantry in France can stand against Eooshian infantry, and no 
general of Boney's that 's fit to hold a candle to Wittgenstein. Then 
there are the Austrians, they are five hundred thousand if a man, and 
they are within ten marches of the frontier by this time under Schwartzen- 
berg and Prince Charles. Then there are the Prooshians under the 
gallant Prince Marshal. Show me a cavalry chief like him now that 
Murat is gone. Hey, Mrs. O'Dowd ? Do you think our little girl here 
need be afraid. Is there any cause for fear, Isidor ? Hey, Sir ? Get 
some more beer." 

" Mrs. O'Dowd said that her Glorvina was not afraid of any man alive 
let alone a Frenchman," and tossed off a glass of beer with a wink which 
expressed her liking for the beverage. 

Having frequently been in presence of the enemy, or, in other words, 
faced the ladies at Cheltenham and Bath, our friend, the Collector, had 
lost a great deal of his pristine timidity, and was now, especially when 
fortified with liquor, as talkative as might be. He was rather a favourite 
with the regiment, treating the young officers with sumptuosity, and 
amusing them by his military airs. And as there is one well-known 
regiment of the army which travels with a goat heading the column, 
whilst another is led by a deer, George said with respect to his brother- 
in-law, that his regiment marched with an elephant. 

Since Amelia's introduction to the regiment, George began to be rather 
ashamed of some of the company to which he had been forced to present 
her ; and determined, as he told Dobbin (with what satisfaction to the 
latter it need not be said), to exchange into some better regiment soon, 
and to get his wife away from these damned vulgar women. But this 
vulgarity of being ashamed of one's sodety is much more common among 
men than women ; (except very great ladies of fashion, who, to be sure, 
indulge in it;) and Mrs. Amelia, a natural and unaffected person, had 
none of that artificial shamefacedness which her husband mistook for deli- 
cacy on his own part. Thus Mrs. O'Dowd had a cock's plume in her hat, 
and a very large " repay ther " on her stomach, which she used to ring on 
aU occasions, narrating how it had been presented to her by her fawther, as 
she stipt into the car'ge after her mar'ge; and these ornaments, with 
other outward peculiarities of the Major's wife, gave excruciating agonies 
to Captain Osborne, when his wife and the Major's came in contact; 
whereas Amelia was only amusfd^by the honest lady's eccentricities, and 
not in the least ashamed of her company. : 

As they made that well-known journey, which almost every Englishman 
of middle rank has travelled since, there might have been more instructive, 



but few more entertainiag companions tlian Mrs. Major O'Dowd. <' Talk 
about kenal boats, my dear. Ye should see the kenal boats between 
Dublin and BalUnadoe. It 's there the rapid trayelling is ; and the beau- 
tifdi cattle. Sure me fawther got a goold medal (and his Excellency him* 
self eat a slice of it, and said never was finer laate in his loif) for a foor^ 
year -old heifer, the like of which ye never saw in this country any day." 
A&d Jos owned with a sigh, " that for good streaky beef, really mingled 
with hi and lean, there was no country like England.*' 

''Except Irekoid, where all your best mate comes from,'' said the 
Major's lady ; proceedmg, as is not unusual with patriots of her nation, 
to make comparisoufl greatly in favour of her own country. This idea of 
CO mparing the market at Bruges with those of Dublin, idtlK>ugh she had 
suggested it hersdf, caused immense scorn and derinon on her part. 
I 'U thank ye to tell me what they mean by that old gazabo on l^e 
top of the market'plaoe," said she, in a burst of ridicote fit to hare 
brought the old tower down. The place wa» full of English soldiery as 
they passed. English bugles woke them in the morning : at night-fall 
they went to bed to the note of the British fife and drum : all the country 
and Europe was in arms, and the greatest event of history pending ; and 
honest Peggy O'Dowd, whom it ooncemed as well as another, went on 
prattling about Ballinafad, and the horses in the stables at Glenmalony, 
and the dar't drunk there ; and Jos Sedley interposed about curry and 
riee at Dumdum ; and Amelia thought about her husb£aid, and how best 
she should show her love for him i as if these were the great topics of the 

Those who like to lay down the History-book, and to speculate upon 
what Mdfkt have happened in the world, but for the fatal occurrence of 
what actually did take place (a most puzzling, amusing, ingenious, and 
profitable kind of n^dxtation) have no doubt often thought to themselves 
what a speddily bad time Napoleon took to come back from Elba, and to 
let loose his eagle from Gulf San Juan to Notre Dame. The Mstoriaiis on 
our side tell us that the armies of the allied powers were all providentially 
on a war-footing, and ready to bear down at a moment's notice upon the 
Elban Emperor. The august jobbers assembled at Vienna, and carving 
out the kingdoms of Europe according to their wisdom, had such causes 
of quarrel among themselves as might have set the armies which had over- 
come Napoleon to fight against each other, but for the return of the 
object of unanimous hatred and fear. This monarch had an army in foil 
force because he had jobbed' to himself Poland,^ and was determined to 
ke«p it : another had robbed half Saxony, and was bent upon maintaining 
his acquisition : Italy was the object of a third's solicitude. Each was 
protesting against the rapacity of the other ; and could the Corsican bat 
have waited in hisprMon until all these parties were by the ears, he might 
have returned and reigned unmolested. But what would have become of 
our story and aU our friends, then ? If all the drops in it were dried up, 
what would become of the sea? 

In the meanwhile the business of life and living and the pursuits of 
pleasure, espedally, went on as if no end were to be expected to th^, 

J^!^'':^M^,.•r/^^y^^.... ^^4. . Jt^ui-^ 


and BO enemy in front. When onr traydlers arrxred at Bmssek, ia. wtiicli 
their regiment was quartered, a great piece of good fortune, as all said, 
they found themselyesin one of the gayest and mosi brillsant little capitals 
in Enrc^, and where all the Vanity Fair bootiia were laid out with the 
most tempting liveliness and splendour. Gnaml^g was hare in pKofosioQ, 
and danemg in pl^y : feasting was there to fill with delight that great 
gourmand of a Jos : there was a theaf^fe whexs a miraculous Catalan! was 
delighting all hearers ; beautiful ride^^ all enlivened with martial spl^do^nr ; 
a rare old city, with strange oos^>n«s and wonderfnl architecture, to 
deliglit the eyes of little Anielia, wliib had nevar before seen a £oc^^ 
country, and fill her with charming surprises : so that now and for a fow 
weeks' space, in a fine handsome lodging, whereof the expenses were borne 
by Jos aid Osborne, who w»b flush of money and full of kind attentions to 
his wife — for about a fortnight I say, during which her honeymoon ended, 
Mrs. Amelia wm as pleased and happy as any little bride out of En^and. 

Every day during this happy time there was novelty and ammtmemk 
for all< parties. There was a chureh to see, or a picture gallery-^hoie 
was a ride, or an opera. The bands of the regiments were making music 
at all hours. The greatest folks of England walked in the Park— there 
was a perpetual military festival. George taking out his wife to a new 
jannt or junket every night, was quite pleased with himself as usual, cmd 
swore he was becoming quite a domestic eharacter. And a jaunt or a junket 
with km i W^as it not enough to set this little heart beating with joy ? Her 
letters home to her mother were filled with delight and gratituide at this 
season. Her husband bade her buy kces, millinrary, jeweU, and gimeradcs 
of all sorts. Oh, he was the kindest, best, and most generous of men ! 

The sight of the very great company of lords and ladies and fashionable 
peraons who thronged the town and appeared in every public place, filled 
George's truly Irtish soul with intense deHght. They filung off tfa«t 
hiqppy frigidity and insolence of demeanour which oeeasioaally characterises 
the great at home, and appearing in numberless puMie phices, condescended 
to min^ with the rest di the oompany whom they met there. One night 
at a pad;y giv^i by the g^^alof the division to which Gecn^e's regiment 
bel(mged, he had the honour of dancing with Lady Blanche Thistlewood, 
Lcnrd Bareaeres' daughter ; he bustled isx ices and refreshments for the 
two noble ladies ; he pushed vxiA squeeeed for Lady Baseaeres' carriage ; 
he bragged about the Ccnmtess wi^ he got home, in a way which hie 
own father could not have surpassed. He called upon the ladies the vffsi 
day ; he rode by their side in the Park ; he asked their party to a great 
dinn^ at a restaurateur's, and was quite wild with exultation when they 
agreed to come. Old Baieaores, who had not much pride and a large 
appet&e, would go for a dinner anywhere. 

" I hope there will be no women besides our own party," Lady Bare- 
acares said, after refleetieg upon the invitation which load been made, and 
accepted with too much prerapitancy. 

" Gracious Heaven, Mamma— ^you don't suppose the man would bring 
his wife," shrieked Lady Blanche, who had been languishing in George's 
arms in the newly-imported waltz for. hoars the x^it before. '' The 
" men are bearable, but their wx}m^ — ** 


244 VJkKlTy PAIB. 

" Wife, just married, deT'lisIi pretty woman, I hear," the old Eari 

"Well, my dear Bknche," said the mother, *'I suppose as Papa wants, 
to go, we must go r but we needn't know them in England, you know.'*' 
And so, determined to cut their new acquaintance in Bond Street, these- 
great folks went to eat his dinner at Brussels, and condescending to^ 
make him pay for their pleasure, showed their dignity by. making hi» 
wife uncomfortable, and carefully excluding her from the conversation. 
This is a species of dignity in which the high-bred British female 
reigns supreme. To watch the behaviour of a fine lady to other and 
humbler women is a very good sport for a philosophical frequenter of 
Vanity Fair. 

This festival, on which honest George spent a great deal of money, was 
the very dismallest of all the entertainments which Amelia had in her 
honey-moon. She wrote the most piteous accoimts of the feast home to 
her mamma: how the Countess of Bareacres would not answer when 
spoken to; how Lady Blanche stared at her with her eye-glass; and 
what a rage Captain Dobbin was in at their behaviour; and how my 
lord as they came away from the feast, asked to see the bill, and pro- 
nounced it a d — bad dinner, and d — dear. But though Amelia told all 
these stories, and wrote home regarding her guests' rudeness, and her own 
discomfiture ; old Mrs. Sedley was mightily pleased nevertheless, and 
talked about Emmy's friend, the Countess of Bareacres, with such assi- 
dmty that the news how his son was entertaining Peers and Peeresses 
actually came to Osborne's ears in the City. 

Those who know the present Lieutenant-General Sir George Tufto, 
K.C.B., and have seen him, as they may on most days in the season, 
padded and in stays, strutting down PaU-Mall with a ricketty swagger on 
his high-heeled lacquered boots, leering under the bonnets of passers by, 
or riding a showy chestnut, and ogling Broughams in the Parks — ^those 
who know the present Sir George Tufto would hardly recognise the 
daring Peninsula and Waterloo officer. He has thick curling brown hair 
and black eyebrows now, and his whiskers are of the deepest purple. He 
was light-haired and bald in 1815, and stouter in the person and in the 
limbs, which especially have shrunk very much of late. When he was 
about seventy years of age (he is now nearly eighty), his hair, which was 
very scarce and quite white, suddenly grew thick, and brown, and curly, 
and his whiskers and eyebrows took their present colour. Ill-natured 
people say that his chest is all wool, and that his hair, because it never grows, 
is a wig. Tom Tufto, With whose father he quarrelled ever so many years 
ago, declares that Mademoiselle de Jaisey, of the French theatre, pulled his 
grandpapa's hair off in the green-room ; but Tom is notoriously spiteful 
and jealous ; and the General's wig has nothing to do with our story. 

One day, as some of our friends of the — ^th were sauntering in the 
flower-market of Brussels, having been to see the Hotel de Ville, which 
Mrs. Major O'Dowd declared was not near so large or handsome as her 
fawther's mansion of Glenmalony, an officer of rank with an soldier behind 
him, rode up to the market, and descending from his horse, came amongst 
the flowers, and selected the very finest bouquet which money could buy. 


The beautifnl bundle being tied up in a paper, the officer remounted, giving 
the nosegay into the charge of his military groom, who carried it with a 
grin, foUowing his chief who rode away in great state and self-satis- 

" Ton should see the flowers at Glenmalony," Mrs. O'Dowd was remark- 
ing. " Me fawther has three Scotch gamers with nine helpers. We have 
an acre of hot-4iouses, and pines as common as pays in the sayson. Our 
greeps weighs six pounds every bunch of 'em, and upon me honour and 
conscience I think our magnolias is as big as taykettles.'* 

Dobbin, who never used to * draw out' Mrs. O'Dowd as that wicked 
Osborne delighted in doing, (much to Amelia's terror, who implored him 
to spare her,) fell back in the crowd, crowing and sputtering until he 
reached a safe distance, when he exploded amongst the astonished market- 
people with shrieks of yelling laughter. 

"Hwhat 's that gawky guggling about?" said Mrs. O'Dowd. "Is it his 
nose bleedn ? He always used to say 'twas his nose bleedn, till he must 
have pomped all the blood out of um. An't the magnolias at Glenmalony 
as big as taykettles, O'Dowd P " 

' " Deed then they are, and bigger, Peggy," the Major said. When the 
<!onversation was interrupted in the manner stated by the arrival of the 
officer who purchased the bouquet. 
- " Devlish fine horse, — who is it ?" George asked. 

" You should see me brother MoUoy Moloney's horse. Molasses,' that 
won the cop at the Curragh," the Major's wife was exclaiming, and was 
continuing the family history, when her husband interrupted her by 

" It 's General Tufto, who commands the cavalry division ;" adding 

quietly, " he and I were both shot in the same leg at Talavera." 

" Where you got your step," said George with a laugh. " General Tufto ! 
Then my dear the Crawleys are come." 

Amelia's heart fell, — she knew not why. The sun did not seem to 
HEAune so bright. The tall old roofs and gables looked less picturesque all 
of a sudden, though it was a brilliant sunset, and one of the brightest and 
most beautiful days at the end of May. 



E. JOS had hired a pw of hones for 
his open carriage, with which cattle, 
and the smart London vehide, he 
made a very tolerable figure in the 
drives about Brussels, (jeorge 
purchased a horse for his private 
riding, and he and Captain Dobbin 
would often accompany the carnage 
in which Jos and his sister took 
daily excursions of pleasure. They 
went out that day in the park for 
their accustomed diversion, and 
there, sure enough, Greorge's re- 
mark with regard to the arrival of 
Eawdon Crawly and his wife 
proved to be correct. In the midst 
of a little troop of horsemen, con- 
sisting of some of the very greatest persons in Brusseb, Bebecca was seen 
in the prettiest and tightest of riding-habits, mounted on a beautiful little 
Arab, which she rode to perfection (having acquired the art at Queen's 
Crawley, where the Baronet, Mr. Pitt, and Eawdon himself had given her 
many lessons), and by the side of the gallant General Tufto. 

" Sure, it 's the Jiie himself," cried Mrs. Major O'Dowd to Jos, who 
began to bludli violently ; " and that 's Lord Uxbridge on the bay. How 
elegant he looks ! Me brother, Molloy Moloney, is as like him as two peas." 
Rebecca did not make for the carriage ; but as soon as she perceived 
her old acquaintance Amelia seated in it, acknowledged her presence by a 
gracious word and smile, and by kissing and shaking her fingers playfully 
in the direction of the vehicle. Then she resumed her conversation with 
Greneral Tufto, who asked " who the fat officer was in the gold-laced cap?'* 
on which Becky replied, " that he was an officer in the East Indian ser- 
vice." But Rawdon Crawley rode out of the ranks of his company, and 
came up and shook hands heartily with Amelia, and said to Jos, " WeU, 
old boy, how are you? " and stared in Mrs. O'Dowd's face and black cock's 
feathers until she began to think she had made a conquest of him, 

George, who had been delayed behind, rode up almost immediately 
with Dobbin, and they touched their caps to the august personages, among 
whom Osborne at once perceived Mrs. Crawley. He was delighted to see 
Eawdon leaning over Ms carriage familiarly and talking to Amelia, and 
met the aide-de-camp's cordial greeting with more than corresponding 


warmtL The nods betwaen Bawdon und Dol:^in were of the veiy faintest 
specimens of politeaesi* 

Crawley told George where they were stopping with General Tolto at 
the Hotel du Pare, and George made his friend promise to come speedily 
to Osborne's own residence. " Sorry I hadn't seen you three days ago," 
George said. " Had a dinner at the Restaurateur's — ^rather a nice thing. 
Lord Bareacres, and the Countess, and Lady Blanche, were good enough 
to dme with us — ^wish we 'd had you." Having thus let his friend know 
his claims to be a man of fashion, Osborne parted from Bawdon, who 
followed the august squadron down an alley into which they cantered, 
while George and Dobbin resumed their places, one on each side of 
Amelia's carriage. 

"How well the Juke looked," Mrs. O'Dowd remarked. " The Wel- 
lesleys and Maloneys are related ; but, of course, poor / would never 
dream of introjuicing myself unless his Grace thought proper to remember 
our family-tie." 

" He 's a great soldier," Jos said, mueh more at ease now the great 
man was gone. "Was there ever a battle won like Salamanca? Hey, 
Dobbin ? But where was it he learnt his art ? In India, my boy ! The 
jungle's the school for a general, mark me tliat. I knew him myselft, 
too, Mrs. O'Dowd : we both of us danced the same evening with Miss 
Cutler, daughter of Cutler of the Artillery, and a devilish fine girl, at 

The apparition of the great personages held them aU in talk during the 
drive ; and at dinner ; and until the hour came when ihe^ were all to go 
to the Opera. 

It was almo^ like Old England. The house was filkd with familiar 
British faces, and those toilettes for which the British female has long 
been celebrated. Mrs. O'Dowd's was not the least splendid amongst 
these, and she had a curl on her forehead, and a set of Insh diamonds and 
Cairngorms, which outshone all the decorations in the house, in her 
notion. Her presence used to excruciate Osborne ; but go she would 
upon all parties of pleasure on which she heard her young friends were 
bent. It never entered into her thought but that they must be charmed 
of her company. 

" She 's been useful to you, my dear," George said to his wife, whom 
he could leave alone with less scruple when she had this company. " But 
what a comfort it is that Eebecca's come : you will have her for a friend, 
and we may get rid now of this dainn'd Irishwoman." To this Amelia 
did not answer, yes or no : and how do we know what her thoughts 

The coup d^cdl of the Brussels opera-house did not strike Mrs. O'Dowd 
as being so fine as the theatre m Eishamble Street, Dublin, nor was 
French music at all equal in her opinion to the melodies of her native 
country. She favoured her friends with these and other opinions in a 
very loud tone of voice, and tossed about a great clattering fan she 
sported, with the most splendid complacency. 

" Who is that wonderful woman with Amelia, Eawdon, love? " said a 
lady in an opposite box (who, almost always civil to her husband in 



private, was more fond than ever of him in company). " Don't you see 
that creature with a yellow thing in her turban, and a red satin gown, 
and a great watch?" 

"Near the pretty little woman in white?" asked a middle-aged gen- 
tleman seated by the querist's side, with orders in his button, and several 
under- waistcoats, and a great, chol^, white stock. 

" That pretty woman in white is Amelia, General : you are remarking 
all the pretty women, you naughty man." 

" OiJy one, begad, in the warld I" said the General, delighted, and the 
lady gave him a tap with a large bouquet which she had. 

" Bedad it's him," said Mrs. O'Dowd; " and that's the very bokay he 
bought in the Marshy aux Flures I" and when Eebecca, having caught 
her friend's eye, performed the little hand-kissing operation once more, 
Mrs. Major O'D., taking the compliment to herself, returned the salute 
with a gracious smile, which sent that unfortunate Dobbin shrieking out 
of the box again. 

At the end of the act, George was out of the box in a moment, ai^The 
was even going to pay his respects to Eebecca in her loge. He met 
Crawley in the lobby, however, where they exchanged a few sentences 
upon the occurrences of the last fortnight. 


" Tou found my cheque all right at the agent's ? *' George said, with a 
knowing air. 

"All right, my boy," Eawdon answered. "Happy to give you your 
revenge. Grovemor come round ? " 

" Not yet," said Greorge, " but he will ; and you know I 've some pri- 
vate fortune through my mother. Has Aunty relented ? " 

" Sent me twenty pound, damned old screw. When shall we have a 
meet ? The General dines out on Tuesday. Can *t you come Tuesday ? 
I say, make Sedley cut off his moustache. What the devil does a civilian 
mean with a moustache and those infernal frogs to his coat. By-bye. Try 
and come on Tuesday ; " and Bawdon was going off with two brilliant 
young gentlemen of fashion, who were, like himself, on the staff of a 
general officer. 

George was only half pleased to be asked to dinner on that particular 
day when the General was not to dine. "I will go in and pay my respects 
to your wife," said he; at which Bawdon said, "Hm, as you please," 
looking very glum, and at which the two young officeirs exchanged know- 
ing glances. George parted from them, and strutted down the lobby to 
the General's box, the number of which he had carefully counted. 

"Mitrez" said a clear little voice, and our friend found himself in 
Bebecca's presence ; who jumped up, clapped her hands together, and held 
out both of them to G«orge, so charmed was she to see him. The 
General, with the orders in Ms button, stared at the new comer with a 
sull^ scowl, as much as to say, who the devil are you? 

" My dear Captain George ! " cried little Bebecca in an ecstacy. "How 
good of you to come. The General and I were moping together tSte-a-tSte. 
General, this is my Captain George of whom you heard me talk." 

" Indeed," said the General, with a very small bow, " of what regiment 
is Captain George ? " 

George mentioned the — ^th : how he wished he could have said it was 
a crack cavalry corps. 

" Come home lately from the West Indies, I believe. Not seen much 
service in the late war. Quartered here, Captain George ? " — ^the General 
went on with killing haughtiness. 

" Not Captain George, you stupid man ; Captain Osborne," Bebecca 
said. The General all the while was looking savagely from one to the 

" Captain Osborne, indeed I Any relation to the L — Osbomes ? " 

"We bear the same arms," George said, as indeed was the fact; Mr. 
Osborne having consulted with a herdd in Long Acre, and picked the L — 
arms out of the peerage, when he set up his carriage fifteen years before. 
The General made no reply to this announcement ; but took up his opera- 
glass — ^the double-barrelled lorgnon was not invented in those days — and 
pretended to examine the house ; but Bebecca saw that his disengaged 
eye was working round in her direction, and shooting out blood-shot 
glances at her and George. 

She redoubled in cordiality. " How is dearest Amelia? But I needn't 
ask : how pretty she looks I And who is that nice good-natured looking 
creature with her — a flame of yours ? 0, you wicked men ! And there 

250 VAXm FiiB. 

is Mr. Sedley ^atiag ioe8» I deelaie: kow hfi seems to enjoy HI Qeneral, 
why have we not had any ices ?" 

'<£Hnll I go and fetdi you some?" said the General, fouxBiing with 


*' Let me go, I entreat yon," G^eorge said. 
'* No, I wHl go to Amelia's bo 

I box. Dear, sweet girl 1 Give me your arm. 
Captain Greorge ;" and so saying, and with a nod to the GcmcBnil, she 
tripped into the lobby. She gave Gborge the queereaft, knowingest look, 
wheal they were together, a look which might have been interpreted, 
'*Don't you see the state of affairs, and what a fool I 'm making of him?" 
Bat he did not peroeive it. He was thinking of his own plans, and lost 
in pompons admiration of his own irresistible jjipwers of pleasing. 

The curses to which the General gave a low utterance, as soon as 
Bebecca and her oonqnesor iuui quitted him, were so deep, that I am sure 
no ijomposibenr in Messrs. Bradbmy and Evans's establishment would 
venture to print them were they written down. They came from the 
General's heart ; and a wonderful thing it is to think that the human heart 
is capable of generating such produce, and can throw out, as occasion 
demands, such a supply of lust and fiiry, rage and hatred. 

Amelia's gentle eyes, too, had been &Led anxiously on the pair, whose 
conduct had so chafed the jealous General ; but when Eebecca entered her 
box, she flew to her friend with an affectionate rapture which showed itsdf, 
in spite o£ the publicity of the place ; for she embraced her dearest fnend 
in the presence of the whole house, at least in loll view of the General's 
glass, now brought to bear upon the Osborne party. Mrs. Bawdon 
saluted Jos, too, with the kindliest greeting : she admired Mrs. O'Dowd'a 
large Cairngorm brooch and superb Irish diamonds, and wouldn't believe 
that they were not from Goloonda direct. She bustled, she chattered, she 
turned and twisted, and smiled upon one, and smirked on another, all in 
full view of the jealous opera^lass opposite. And when the time for the 
ballet came (in which there was no dancer that went through her grimaces 
or performed her comedy of action better), she skipped back to her own 
box, leaning on Captam Dobbin's arm this time. No, she would not have 
George's : he must stay and talk to his dearest, best, little Amelia. 

'^What a huinbug that woman is," honest old Dobbin mumbled to 
George, when he eame back from Bebecca's box, whither he had conducted 
her in perfect silence, and with a countenance as glum as an undertaker's. 
'* She writhes and twists about like a snake. All the time she was here, 
didn't you see, George, how she was acting at the General over the way ? " 

"Humbug — acting? Hang it, she 's the nicest little woman in Eng- 
land," George replied, showing his white teeth, and giving his ambrosial 
whiskers a twirl. ** You ain't a man of the world, Dobbin. Dammy, 
look at her now, she 's talked over Tufto in no time. Look how he 's 
laughing ! Gad, what a shoulder she has ! Emmy, why didn't you have 
a bouquet ? Everybody has a bouquet.^' 

"Faith, then, why didn't you boy one?" Mrs. O'Dowd aaid ; and both 
Amelia and William Dobbin thanked her for this timely observation. But 
beyond this neither of the ladies rallied. Amelia was overpowa'ed by the 
flash and the dazzle and the fashionable talk of her worldly rival Even 


t]ft O'Dowd was silent and subdued after Becky's bcilliaiit appaiition, 
and scarcely said a word more about Glenmalony all ike evening. 

*' When do you intend to give up play, George, as you have promised me 
any time these hundred years?" Dobbin said to his Mend a few days after 
the night at the Opera. " When do you intend to give up sermonising ? " 
was the other's reply. " What the deuce, man, are you alamted about P 
We play low; I won last night. You don't suppose Crawley dbfiiti? 
With hax play it comes to pretty much the same tlmag «t i^ year's end." 

"But I don't think he oonid paf if ke iost," Dobbin said; and his 
advice met with the success which advice usually commands. Osborne 
'flj^i^^Cra^^e^ were repeatedly together now. General Tufto dined abroad 
almost' constaS^tly. George was always welcome in the apartments (very 
close indeed to fhoifere^ df tte)Genfirjd), which the Aide-de-camp and his 
wife occupied in the hotel. >.. ^„ 

Amelia's manners were such when she and Cleorge visited Crawley and 
his wife at these quarters, that they had very nearly come to their first 
quarrel ; that is, George scolded Ms wife violently for her evident unwil- 
lingness to go, and the high and mighty manner in which she comported 
herself towards Mrs. Crawley, her old friend ; and Amelia did not say one 
single word in reply ; but with her husband's eye upon her, and Eebecca 
scanning her as she felt, was, if possible, more bashful and awkward on 
the second visit which she paid to Mrs. Kawdon, than on her first calL 

Bebecca was doubly affectionate, of course, and would not take notice, 
in the least, of her friend's coolness. ** I think Emmy has become prouder 
since her other's name was in the — ^ since Mr. Sedley's mitfortanes,'' 
Eebecca said, softening the phrase charitably for George's ear. 

" Upon my word, I thought when we were at Brighton she was doing . 
me the honour to be jealous of me ; and now I suppose she is scandalised 
because Bawdon, and I, and the General live together. Why, my dear 
creature, how could we, with our means, live at all, but for a Mend to 
share expenses ? And do you suppose that Bawdon is not big enough to 
take care of my honour? But I 'm very much obliged to Emmy, very," 
Mrs. Bawdon, said. 

" Pooh, jealousy I " answered George, " all women are jealous." 

" And all men too. Weren 't you jealous of General Tufto, and the 
Greneral of you, on the night of the Opera ? Why, he was ready to eat 
me for going with you to visit that foolish little wife of your's ; as if I 
care a pin for either of you," Crawley's wife said, with a pert toss of her 
head. " Will you dine here? The dragon dines with the Commander* 
in-^^hief. Great news is stirring. They say the French have crossed the 
fircmtier. We shall have a quiet dinner." 

George accepted the invitation, although his wife was a little ailing. 
They were now not quite six weeks married. Another woman was laugh- 
ing or sneering at her expense, and he not angry. He was not even 
angry with hinouself, this good-natured fellow. It is a shame, he owned to 
himself; but hang it, if a pretty woman wiU throw herself into your way^, 
why, what can a fellow do, you know ? lam rather free about women. 


he liad often said, smiling and nodding knowingly to Stubble and Spooney, 
and other comrades of the mess-table; and they rather respected him than 
otherwise for this prowess. Next to conquering in war, conquering in 
loTe has been a source of pride, time out of mind, amongst men in Vanity 
Fair, or how should school-boys brag of their amours, or Don Juan be 
popular P 

So Mr. Osborne, having a firm conviction in his own mind that he 
was a woman-killer and destined to conquer, did not run counter to his 
fate, but yielded himself up to it quite complacently. And as Emmy did 
not say much or plague him with her jealousy, but merely became un- 
happy and pined over it miserably in secret, he chose to fancy that she 
was not suspicious of what all his acquaintance were perfectly aware — 
namely, that he was carrying on a desperate flirtation with Mrs. Crawley. 
He rode with her whenever she was free. He pretended regimental busi- 
ness to Amelia, (by which falsehood she was not in the least deceived) 
and consigning his wife to solitude or her brother's society, passed his 
evenings in the Crawley's company ; losing money to the husband and 
flattering himself that the wife was dying in love for him. It is very 
likely that this worthy couple never absolutely conspired, and agreed 
together in so many words : the one to cajole the young gentleman, 
whilst the other won his money at cards : but they understood each other 
perfectly well, and Kawdon let Osborne come and go with entire good 

George was so occupied with his new acquaintances that he and 
William Dobbin were by no means so much together as formerly. George 
avoided him in public and in the regiment, and, as we see, cUd not 'l£e 
those sermons which his senior was disposed to inflict upon him. If 
some parts of his conduct made Captain Dobbin exceedingly grave and 
cool ; of what use was it to tell George that though his whiskers were 
large, and his own opinion of his knowingness great, he was as green as 
a schoolboy ? that Eawdon was making a victim of him as he had done 
of many before, and as soon ds he had used him would fling him off with 
scorn ? He would not listen : and so, as Dobbin upon those days when 
he visited the Osborne house, seldom had the advantage of meeting his 
old friend, much painful and unavailing talk between them was spared. 
Our friend George was in the full career of the pleasures of Vanity Fair, 

There never was, since the days of Darius, such a brilliant train of camp- 
followers as hung round the train of the Duke of Wellington's army in 
the Low Countries, in 1815 ; and led it dancing and feasting, as it were, 
up to the very brink of battle. A certain ball which a noble Duchess gave 
at Brussels on the 15 th of June in the above-named year is historical. All 
Brussels had been in a state of excitement about it, and I have heard 
from ladies who were in that town at the period, that the talk and interest 
of persons of their own sex regarding the ball was much greater even 
than in respect of the enemy in their front. The struggles, intrigues, and 
prayers to get tickets were such as only English ladies will employ, in 
order to gain admission to the society of the great of their own nation. 


Job and Mrs. O'Dowd, who were panting asked, strove in vain to 
procure tickets ; but others of our friends were more lucky. For instance, 
through the interest of my Lord Bareacres, and as a set-off for the dinner 
at the restaurateur's, George got a card for Captain and Mrs. Osborne ; 
which circumstance greatly elated him. Dobbin, who was a friend of the 
General commanding the division in which their regiment was, came 
laughing one day to Mrs. Osborne, and displayed a similar invitation, 
which made Jos envious, and George wonder how the deuce he should be 
getting into society. Mr. and Mrs. Bawdon, finally, were of course 
invited; as became the friends of a General commanding a cavalry 

On the appointed night, George, having commanded new dresses and 
ornaments of all sorts for AmeUa,. drove to the famous ball, where his 
wife did not know a single soul. After looking about for Lady Bareacres, 
who cut him, thmking the card was quite enough — ^and after placing 
Amelia on a bench, he left her to her own cogitations there, thinking, on 
his own part, that he had behaved very handsomely in getting her new 
clothes, and bringing her to the ball, where she was free to amuse herself 
as she hked. Her thoughts were not of the pleasantest, and nobody 
except honest Dobbin came to disturb them. 

. H^iilst her appearance was an utter failure (as her husband felt with a sort 
of rage), Mrs. Bawdon Crawley's debut was, on the contrary, very brilliant. 
She arrived very late. Her face was radiant ; her dress perfection, in the 
midst of the great persons assembled, and the eye-glasses directed to her. 
Bebecca seemed to be as cool and collected as when she used to marshd 
Miss Pinkerton's little girls to church. Numbers of the men she knew 
already, and the dandies thronged round her. As for the ladies, it was 
whispered among them that Bawdon had run away with her from out of 
a convent, and that she was a relation of the Montmorency family. She 
spoke French so perfectly that there might be some truth in this report, 
and it was agreed that her manners were fine, and her air distingu^. Fifty 
would-be partners thronged round her at once, and pressed to have the 
honour to dance with her. But she said she was engaged, and only going 
to. dance very little ; and made her way at once to the place where Emmy 
sate quite unnoticed, and dismally unhappy. And so, to finish the poor 
child at once, Mrs. Bawdon ran and greeted affectionately her dearest 
Amelia, and began forthwith to patronise her. She found fault with her 
friend's dress, and her hair-dresser, and wondered how she could be so 
chausnee, and vowed that she must send her coraetiere the next morning* 
3he vowed that it was a delightful ball ; that there was everybody that 
every one knew, and only a very few nobodies in the whole room. It is a 
fact, that in a fortnight, and ^ter three dinners in general society, this 
young woman had got up the genteel jargon so well, that a native could 
not speak it better ; and it was only from her French being so good, that 
you could know she was not a bom woman of fashion. 

George, who had left Emmy on her bench on entering the ball-room, 
very soon found his way back when Bebecca was by her dear friend's side. 
Becky was just lecturing Mrs. Osborne upon the follies which her husband 
was committing. " For God's sake, stop him from gambling, my dear," 


she Baid, " or he will ruin himself. He and Bawdon are playing at cards 
every night, and you know he is very poor, and Bawdon will win ©ray 
shilling from him if he does not take care. Why don't you prev^t him, 
you little careless creature ? Why don't you come to us of an evemng, 
instead of moping at home with that Captain Dobbin ? I dare say he is 
trh^aimable ; but how could one love a man with feet of sudi me ? Your 
husband's feet are darlings — Here he comes. Where have you been, 
wretdi ? Here is Emmy crying her eyes out for you. Are you coming to 
fetch me for the quadrille P" And she left her bouquet and shawl by 
Amelia's side, and Gripped off with George to dance. Women only know 
how to wound so. There is a poison on the tips of their little shafts, whkh 
stings a thousand times more than a man's blunter weapon. Our poor 
Emmy, who had never hated, never sneered all her life, was powerless in 
the hands of her remorseless little enemy. 

George danced with Bebecca twice or thrice — how many times Amelia 
scarcely knew. She sate quite unnoticed in her comer, except when 
Bawdon came up with some words of clumsy conversation : and later m 
the evening, when Captain Dobbin made so bold as to bring her refresh- 
ments and sit beside her. He did hot like to ask her why she was so sad; 
but as a pretext for the tears which were filling in her eyes, she told him^ 
that Mrs. Crawley had alarmed her by telling her that George would go on 

" It is curious, when a man is bent upon play, by what clumsy rogues 
he will allow himself to be cheated," Dobbin said; and Emmy said, 
'^ Indeed." She was thinking of something ebe. It was not ihe loss of 
the money that grieved her. 

At last George came back for Kebecca's shawl and flowers. She was 
going away. She did not even condescend to come back aad uxy good 
bye to Amelia. The poor girl let her husband come and go without saying 
a word, and her head fell on her breast. Dobbin had been cidled away, 
and was whispering deep in conversation with the general of the division, 
his friend, and had not seen this last parting. George went away then 
wkh the bouquet ; but when he gave it to the owna-, there lay a note, coikd 
like a snake among the flowers. Bebecca's eye caught it at onee. She 
had been used to deal with notes in early life. She put out her hand «ad 
took the nosegay. He saw by her eyes as they met, that she was aware 
what she should find there. Her husband hurried her away, still too 
intent upon his own thoughts, seemingly, to take note of any mai'ks of 
reeognition which might pass between his friend and his wife. These 
were, however, but tnfling. Eebecca gave George her hand with one of 
her usual quick knowing glances, and made a curtsey and walked away. 
George bowed over the hand, said nothing in reply to a remark of Crawley's, 
did not hear it even, his brain was so throbbing with triumph and excite- 
ment, and allowed them to go away without a word. 

His wife saw the one part at least of the bouquet-scene. It was quite 
natural that George should come at Bebecca's request to get her her scarf 
and flowers : it was no more than he had done twenty times belbre in the 
course of the last few days ; but now it was too mudi for her. '^ Wil- 
liam," ^e said, suddenly clinging to Dobbin, who was near her, "you've 

^y^r^'^/^'/.^j r^/^y^^^'^ ^^'^^y^/y/TY/ Aff^ 

■^^'^' .> Y\'y?yn^^ //^f^ ^^^j 


always been very kind to me — I'm — ^I*m not well. Take me home." 
She did not know she called him by his Christian name, aa George was 
accustomed to do. He went away with her quickly. Her lodgings were 
hard by ; and they threaded through the crowd without, where every- 
thing seemed to be more astir than even in the ball-room within. 

George had been angry twice or thrice at iinding his wife up on his 
return from the parties which he frequented ; so she went straight to bed 
now ; but although she did not sleep, and although the din and clatter, 
and the galloping of horsemen was incessant, she never heard any of 
these noises, having quite other disturbances to keep her awake. 

Osborne meanwhile, wild with elation, went off to a play-table, and 
began to bet frantically. He won repeatedly. " Everythmg succeeds 
with me to-night," he said. But his luck at play even did not cure him 
of his restlessness, and he started up alter awhile, pocketing his winnings, 
and went to a buffet, where he drank off many bumpers of wine. 

Here, as he was rattling away to the people around, laughing loudly 
and wild with spirits, Dobbin found him. He had been to the card- 
tables to look there for his friend. Dobbin looked as pale and grave as 
his comrade was flushed and jovial. 

" Hullo, Dob ! Come and drink, old Dob I The Duke's wine is famous. 
Give me some more, you Sir ;" and he held out a tremblii^ glass for 
the liquor. 

"Come out, Greorge," said Dobbin, still gravely; "don't diink." 

"Drink I there's nothing like it. Drink yourself, and light up your 
lantern jaws, old boy. Here's to you." 

Dobbin went up and whispered something to him, at which George, 
giving a start and a wild hurray, tossed off his glass, clapped it on the 
table, and walked away speedily on his fri^d's arm. " The enemy has 
passed the Sambre," William said, ^' and our left is already engaged. 
Come away. We are to march in three hours." 

Away went George, his nerves quivering with excitement at the news 
so long looked for, so sudden when it came. What were love and intrigue 
now P He thought about a thousand things but these in his rapid walk 
to his quarters — ^his past life and future chances — the fate which might 
be before him — ^the wife, the child perhaps, from whom unseen he might 
be about to part. Oh, how he wished that night's work undone ! and 
that with a dear conscience at least he might say farewell to the tender 
and guileless being by whose love he had set such little store ! 

He thought over his brief married bfe. In those few we§ks he had 
frightfully dissipated his, little capital. How wild and reckless he had 
been ! Should any mischance befal him : what was then left for her ? 
How unworthy he was of her. Why had he married her ? He was not 
fit for marriage. Why had he disobeyed his father, who had been 
always so generous to him ? Hope, remorse, ambition, tenderness, and 
selfish regret filled his heart. He sate down and wrote to his father, 
remembering what he had said once before, when he was engaged to fight 
a duel. Dawn faintly streaked the sky as he closed this farewell letter. 
He sealed it, and kissed the superscription. He thought how he had 


deserted that generous father, and of the thousand kindnesses which the 
stem old man had done him. 

He had looked into Amelia's bed-room when he entered ; she lay quiet, 
and her eyes seemed closed, and he was glad that she was asleep. On 
arriving at his quarters firom the ball, he had found his regimental servant 
already making preparations for his departure : the man had understood 
his signal to be still, and these arrangements were very quickly and 
silently made. Should he go in and wake Amelia, he thought, or leave a 
note for her brother to break the news of departure to her ? He went in 
to look at her oncer again. 

She had been awake when he first entered her room, but had kept her 
eyes closed, so that even her wakefulness should not seem to reproach 
him. But when he had returned, so soon after herself, too, this timid little 
heart had felt more at ease, and tmming towards him as he stept softly 
out of the room, she had fallen into a light sleep. George came in and 
looked at her again, entering still more softly. By the pale night-lamp he 
could see her sweet, pale face — ^the purple eyelids were fringed and closed, 
and one round arm, smooth and white, lay outside of the coverlet. Good 
Gk)d 1 how pure she was ; how gentle, how tender, and how friendless ! 
and he, how selfish, brutal, and black with crime I Heart-stained, and 
shame-stricken, he stood at the bed's foot, and looked at the sleeping girl. 
How dared he — who was he, to pray for one so spotless ! God bless her ! 
God bless her ! He came to the bed-side, and looked at the hand, the 
little soft hand, lying asleep ; and he bent over the pillow noiselessly 
towards the gentle pale face. 

Two fair arms closed tenderly round his neck as he stooped down. 
" I am awake, Greorge," the poor child said, ynih a sob fit to break the 
little heart that nestled so closely by his own. She was awake, poor soul, 
and to what ? At that moment a bugle from the Place of Arms began 
sounding clearly, and was* taken up through the town ; and amidst the 
drums of the infantry, and the shrill pipes of the Scotch, the whole city 

/ / 7 

Oyi 9^{?t6t' c// ^^(^a4^ 



E do not daiin to rank among the military 
novelists. Our place is with the non- 
combatants. When the decks are cleared 
for action we go below and wait meekly. 
We should only be in the way of the 
manoeuvres that the gallant fellows are 
performing over head. We shall go no 
farther with the — ^th than to the city gate : 
_ and leaving Major 0*Dowd to his duty, 
come back to the Major's wife, and the 
ladies and the baggage. 

Now, the Major and his lady, who had 
not been invited to the ball at which in our 
last chapter other of our friends figured, 
had much more time to take their whole- 
some natural rest in bed, than was accorded 
to people who wished to enjoy pleasure as 
well as to do duty. " It's my belief, Peggy, my dear," said he, as he pla- 
cidly pulled his night-cap over his ears, " that there will be such a ball 
danced in a day or two as some of 'em has never heard the chune of; " 
and he was much more happy to retire to rest after partaking of a quiet 
tumbler, than to figure at any other sort of amusement. Peggy, for her 
part, would have l^ed to have shown her turban and bird of paradise at 
the ball, but for the information which her husband had given her, and 
which made her very grave. 

" I'd like ye wake me about half an hour before the assembly beats," 
the Major said to his lady. " Call me at half-past one, Peggy, dear, and 
see me things is ready. May be I'll not come back to breakfast, Mrs. O'D." 
With which words, which signified his opinion that the regiment would 
march the next morning, the Major ceased talking, and fell asleep. 

Mrs. O'Dowd, the good housewife, arrayed in curl-papers and a camisole, 
felt that her duty was to act, and not to sleep, at this juncture. " Time 
enough for that," she said, " when Mick's gone ;" and so she packed his tra- 
velling-valise ready for the march, brushed lus cloak, his cap, and other 
warlike habiliments, set them out in order for him ; and stowed away in the 
cloak-pockets a light package of portable refreshments, and a wicker- 
coverea flask or pocket-pistol, containing near a pint of a remarkably 



sound Cognac brandy, of which she and the Major approved very much^ 
and as soon as the hands of the " repayther" pointed to half-past one, 
and its interior arrangements (it had a tone quite aqual to a cathaydral, 
its fair owner considered) knelled forth that fatal hour, Mrs. O'Dowd woke 
up her Major, and had as comfortable a cup of coffee prepared for him as^ 
any made that morning in Brussels. And who is there will deny that 
this worthy lady's preparations betokened affection as much as the fits 
of tears and hysterics by which m^ore senative females exhibited their 
love, and that their partaking of this coffee, which they drank together 
while the bugles were sounding the turn-out and the drums beating in the 
various quarters of the town, was not more useful and to the purpose than 
the outpouring of any mere sentiment could be ? The consequence was, 
that the Major appeared on parade quite trim, fresh, and alert, his well- 
shaved rosy oountenafioe, as he sate on horseback, giving cheerfulness and 
confidence to the whole- corps. All the officers saluted her when the 
regiment marched by the baleony on which this brave woman stood, and 
waved them a cheer as they passed; and I daresay it was not from want 
of courage, but from a sense of female delicacy and propriety, that she 
refrained from leading the gallant — th personally into actions 

On Sundays, and at periods of a solemn nature, Mrs. O'Dowd used to 
read with great gravity out of a large volume of her uacle the Dean's ser- 
mons. It had been of great oomfort to her on board the^ transport a& 
they were coming home, and were very nearly wrecked on. their return 
from the West Indies. After the regiment's departure she b^etook herself 
to thijs volume for meditation ; perhaps she did not understand much of 
what she was reading, and her thoughts were elsewhere : but the sleep 
pffcject, with poor Mick's nighteap there on the pillow, was quite a vain 
one. So it is in the worid. Jack or Donald marches away to glory with 
his knapsack on his shoulder, stepping, out briskly to the tune of "The 
Girr Heft behind me." It is -she who remains and suffers, — ^nd has 
the leisure to think, and broody and rememb^. 

Knowing- how useless regrets are, and how the indulgence of sentiment 
only serves to make people more miserable, Mrs. Eebecca wisely deter- 
mined to give way to no vain feelings of sorrow, and bore- the parting 
from her husband with quite a Spartan equanimity. Indeed Captain 
Eawdon himself was much more affected at the leav&-taking than- the 
resolute little woman to whom he bade farewell. She had mastered this 
rude coarse nature ; and he loved and worshipped her with all his faculties 
of regard and admiration. In all his life he had never been so happy, as, 
during, the past few months, his wife had made him. All former delights 
of turf, mess, hunting-field, and gambling-table; all previous loves and 
courtslups of milliners, opera-dancers, and the like easy triumphs of the 
clumsy military Adonis, were quite insipid when compared to the lawful 
matrimonial pleasures which of late, he had enjoyed. She had known 
peiyetually how to divert him j and he had found his house and her 
society a thousand, times more pleasant than any place or company which 
he had ever frequented from his childhood until now. And he cursed, his 
pa&t follies and extravag^oes^ and bemoaned his vast outlying, debts above 


all, whicli must remaiji for e^er as obetacles to prevent his wife's advance- 
ment in the world. He had often groaned over these in midnight coti- 
vtJTsations with Eebeoca, although as a bachelor they had never given him 
any disquiet. He himself was struck with this phenomenon. " Hang it/' 
he would say (or perhaps use a still stronger expression out of his simple 
vocabulary) " before I was married I didn't care what bills I put my name 
to, and so long as Moses would wait or Levy would renew for three 
months, I kept on never minding. But since I 'm married, except renew- 
ing, of course, I give you my honour I 've not touched a bit of stamped 

Kebecca always knew how to conjure away these moods of melancholy, 
" Why, my stupid love," she would say, " we have . not done with your 
aunt yet. If she fails us, isn't there what you call the Gazette ? or, stop; 
when your uncle Bute's life drops, I have another scheme. The living has 
always belonged to the younger brother, and why shouldn't you sell out 
and go into the Church?" The idea of this conversion set Kawdon inta 
roars of laughter : you might have heard the explosion through the hotel 
at midnight, and the haw-haws of the^ great dragoon's voice. General 
Tufto heard him from his quarters on the first floor below them ; and 
Eebecoa acted the scene with great spirit, arid preached Kawdon's iu*8t 
sermon, to the immense delight of the General at breakfast. 

But these were mere by-gone days and talk. When the find news^ 
arrived that the campaign was opened, and the troops were to march, 
Kawdon's gravity became such that Becky rallied him about it in a manner 
which rather hurt the feelings of the Guardsman. " You don't suppose 
I 'm afraid, Becky, I should think," he said, with a tremor in his voice. 
" But I 'm a pretty good mark for a shot, and you see if it brings me 
down, why I leave one and perhaps two behind me whom I should wish to 
provide for, as I brought 'em into the scrape. It is no laughing matta: 
that, Mrs. C, anyways." 

Eebecca by a hundred caresses and kind words tried to soothe the feel-- 
ings of the wounded lover. It was only when her vivacity and sense of 
humour got the better of this sprightly creature (as they would do under 
most circumstances of life indeed,) that she would break out w^th her 
satire, but she could soon put on a demure face. " Dearest love," she 
said, "do you suppose I feel nothing?" and, hastQy dashing something 
from her eyes, she looked up in her husband's face with a smile. 

"Look here," said he. "If I drop let us see what there is for you. 
I have had a pretty good run of luck here, and here 's two hundred and 
thirty pounds. I have got ten Napoleons in my pocket. That is as much 
as I shall want; for the General pays everything like a prince i and If 
I 'm hit, why you know I cost nothing. Don't ciy, little woman; I may 
live to vex you yet. Well, I shan't take either of my horses, but shafi 
ride the General's grey charger : it 's cheaper, and I told him mine was 
lame. If I 'm done, those two ought to fetch you something. Grigg . 
offered ninety for the mare yesterday, before this confounded news came, 
and like a fool I wouldn't let her go under the two O's. Bulfinch will 
fetch his price any day, only you 'd better sell him in this country, because 

s 2 


the dealers haye so many bills of mine, and so I 'd rather he shouldn 't go 
bade to England. Your little mare the General gave you will fetch some- 
thing, and there 's no d — d liyery stable bills here as there are in London," 
Bawdon added, with a laugh. " There 's that dressing-case cost me two 
hundred, — ^that is, I owe two for it; and the gold tops and bottles must be 
worth thirty or forty. Please to put tkat up the spout, ma'am, with my 
inns, and rings, and watch and chain, and things. They cost a precious 
lot of money. Miss Crawley, I know, paid a hundred down for the chain 
and ticker. Gold tops and bottles, indeed ! dammy, I 'm sorry I didn't 
take more now. Edwards pressed on me a silver-gilt boot-jack, and I 
might have had a dressing-case fitted up with a silver warming-pan, and a 
service of plate. But we must make the best of what we 've got, Becky, 
you know." 

And so, making his last dispositions. Captain Crawley, who had seldom 
thought about anything but himself, until the last few months of his life, 
when Love had obtained the mastery over the dragoon, went through the 
various itenjp of his little catalogue of effects, striving to see how they 
might be turned into money for his wife's benefit, in case any accident 
should befal him. He pleased himself by noting down with a pencil, in 
his big school-boy handwriting, the various items of his portable property 
which might be sold for his widow's advantage— as for example, " My 
double-barril by Manton, say 40 guineas ; my driving cloak, Imed with 
sable fur, £50; my duelling pistols in rosewood case, (same which I shot 
Captain Marker), £20 ; my regulation saddle-holsters and housings ; my 
Laurie ditto," and so forth, over all of which articles he made Eebecca the 

Faithful to his plan of economy, the Captain dressed himself in his 
oldest and shabbiest uniform and epaulets, leaving the newest behind, 
under his wife's (or it might be his widow's) guardianship. And this 
famous dandy of Windsor and Hyde Park went off on his campaign with 
a kit as modest as that of a seijeant, and with something like a praya on 
his Hps for the woman he was leaving. He took her up from the ground, 
tind held her in his arms for a minute, tight pressed against his strong- 
beating heart. His face was purple and his eyes dim, as he put her down 
.and left her. He rode by his General's side, and smoked his dgar in 
«ilence as they hastened after the troops of the General's brigade, which 
preceded them ; and it was not until they were some miles on their way 
that he left off twirling his moustache and broke silence. 

And Bebecca, as we have said, wisely determined not to give way to 
unavailing sentimentality on her husband's departure. She waved him an 
adieu from the window, and stood there for a moment looking out after 
he was gone. The cathedral towers and the full gables of the quaint old 
houses were just beginning to blush in the sunrise. There had been no 
rest for her that night. She was still in her pretty ball-dress, her fair 
hair hanging somewhat out of curl on her neck, and the circles round her 
eyes dark with watching. " What a fright I seem," she said, examining 
herself in the glass, '' and how pale this pink makei one look ! " So she 
divested herself of this pink raiment j in doing which a note fell out from 



her corsage, which she picked up with a snule, and locked into her dressing- 
box. And then she put her bouquet of the ball into a glass of water, and 
went to bed, and slept very comfortably. 

The town was quite quiet when she woke up at ten o'clock, and partook 
of coffee, very requisite and comfortable after the exhaustion and grief of 
the morning's occurrences. 

This meal over, she resumed honest Eawdon's calculations of thei night 
previous, and surveyed her position. Should the worst befal, all things 
considered, she was pretty well to do. There were her own trinkets and 
trousseau, in addition to those which her husband had left behind. Eaw- 
don's generosity, when they were first married, has already been described 
and lauded. Besides these, and the little mare, the General, her slaye and 
worshipper, had made her many very handsome presents in the shape of 
cashmere shawls bought at the auction of a bankrupt French general's lady, 
and numerous tributes from the jewellers' shops, all of which betokiened her 
admirer's taste and wealth. As for "tickers," as poorEawdon called watches,, 
her apartments were alive with their clicking. For, happening to mention 
one night that hers, which Eawdon had given to her, was of English work- 
manship, and went ill, on the very next morning there came to her a little 
bijou marked Leroy, with a chain and cover charmingly set with turquoises, 
and another signed Breguet, which was covered with pearls, and yet. 
scarcely bigger than a half-crown. General Tufto had bought one, and 
Captain Osborne had gallantly presented the other. Mrs. Osborne had 
no watch, though, to do George justice, she might have had one for the- 
asking, and the Honourable Mrs. Tufto in England had an old instrument 
of her mother's that might have served for the plate warming-pan which 
Eawdon talked about. K Messrs. Howell and James were to publish a- 
list of the purchasers of all the trinkets which they sell, how surprised 
would some families be ; and if all these ornaments went to gentlemen's 
lawful wives and daughters, what a profusion of jewellery there would be 
exhilnted in the genteelest homes of Vanity Fair ! 

Every calculation made of these valuables Mrs. Eebeoca found, not 


witboat a pungent feeling of tiiampk and self-satisfaotion, lliat should dc- 
ciunstances occur; she might reckon on six or seven hundred pounds at the 
very least, to begin the world with : and she passed the morning disposiog, 
ordering, looking out, and locking up her properties in the most agreeable 
manner. Among the notes in Bawdon's pocket-book, was a draft for 
twenty pounds on Osborne's banker. This made her think about Mrs. 
Osborne. " I will go and get the draft cashed," she said, "and pay a 
visit afterwards to poor little Emmy." If this is a novel without a hero, 
at least let us lay claim to a heroine. No man in the British army which 
has marched away, not the great duke himself, could be more cool or col- 
lected in the presence of doubts and difficulties, than the indomitable little 
aide-de-camp s wife. 

And there was another of our acquaintances who was also to be left 
behind, a non-combatant, and whose emotions and behaviour we have 
therefore a right to know. This was our friend the ex-collector of 
Boggleywollah, whose rest was broken, like other people's, by the sound- 
ing of the bugles in the early morning. Being a great sleeper, and fond 
of his bed, it is possible he would have snoozed on until his usual hour of 
rising in the forenoon, in spite of all the drums, bugles, and bagpipes in 
the British army, but for an interruption, which did not come &om George 
Osborne, who shared Jos's quarters with him, and was as usual occupied 
too much with his own affairs, or with grief at parting with his wife, to 
think of taking leave of his slumbering brother-in-law — ^it was not George, 
we say, who interposed between Jos Sedley and sleep, but Captain Dobbin, 
who came and roused him up, insisting on shaking hands with him before 
his departure. 

" Very kind of you," said Jos, yawning, and wishing the Captain at 
the deuce. 

" I — I didn't like to go off without saying good-bye, you know," Dob- 
bin said in a very incoherent manner ; " because you know some of us 
;mayn't come back again, and I like to see you all well and — and that sort 
of thing, you know." 

" What do you mean ? " Jos asked, rubbing his eyes. The Captain did 
not in the least hear him or look at the stout gentleman in the night-cap," 
about whom he professed to have such a tender interest. The hypocrite 
was looking and listening with all his might in the direction of George's 
apartments, striding about the room, upsetting the chairs, beating the 
tattoo, biting his nails, and showing other signs of great inward emotion. 

Jos had ^ways had rather a mean opinion of the Captain, and now 
begfin to think his courage was somewhat equivocal. " What is it I can 
do for you, Dobbin?" he said in a sarcastic tone. 

" I tell you what you can do," the Captain replied, coming up to the 
bed; " we march in a quarter of an hour, Sedley, and neither George nor 
I may ever come back. Mind you, you are not to stir from this town until 
you ascertain how things go. You are to stay here and watch over your 
sister, and comfort her, and see that no harm comes to her. If anything 
happens to George, remember she has jao one but you in the world to loojc 
^>te> If it go^s wrong 'With the .army, you'll #e© iter safe bftckio E?igliBid; 


«n(I you will promise me on your word that you will never desert her. I 
know you won't : as far as money goes you were always free enough with 
that. Do you want any? I mean, have you enough gold to take yoii 
back to England in case of a misfortune ?" 

*' Sir," said Jos, majestically, " when I want money, I know where to 
ask for it. And as for my sister, you needn't tell me how I ought to 
behave to her." 

"You speak like a man of spirit, Jos," the other answered good- 
naturedly, " and I am glad that George can leave her in such good hands. 
So I may give him your word of honour, may I, that in case of extremity 
you will stand by her?" 

** Of course, of course," answered Mr. Jos, whose generosity in money 
matters Dobbin estimated quite correctly. 

" And you'll see her safe out of Brussels in the event of a defeat?" 

" A defeat ! D — it, Sir, it's impossible. Don't try and frighten ?w^," the 
hero cried from his bed ; and Dobbin's mind was thus perfectly set at ease 
now that Jos had spoken out so resolutely respecting his conduct to his 
•sister. " At least," thought the Captain, " there will be a retreat secured 
for her in case the worst should ensue." 

If Captain Dobbin expected to get any personal comfwt and satisfac- 
tion from having one more view of Amelia before the regiment marched away, 
his selfishness was punished just as such odious egotism deserved to be. 
The door of Jos's bed-room opened into the sitting-room which was 
<X)mmon to the family party, and opposite this door was that of Amelia's 
chamber. The bugles had wakened everybody: there was no use in 
<5oncealment now. George's s^rant was packing in this room : Osborne 
-coming in and out of the contiguous bed-room, flinging to the man such 
articles as he thought fit to carry on the campaign. And presently 
Dobbin had the opportunity which his heart coveted, and he got sight of 
Amelia's face once more. But what a face it was ! So wMte, so wild 
-and despair-stricken, that the remembrance of it haunted him crfterwards 
like a crime, and the sight smote him with inexpressible pangs of longing 
and pity. 

She was wrapped in a white morning dress, her hair falling on her 
shoulders, and hei^arge eyes fixed and without light. By way of helping 
on the preparations for the departure, and showing that she too could be 
useful at a moment so critical, this poor soul had taken up a sash of 
George's from the drawers whereon it lay, and followed him to and fro 
with the sash in her hand, looking on mutely as his packing proceeded, 
5he came out and stood, leaning at the wall, holding this sash against her 
bosom, from which the heavy net of crimson dropped like a large stain of 
blood. Our gentle-hearted Captain felt a guilty shock as he looked at 
her. " Good God," thought he, " and is it grief like this I dared to pry 
into ? " And there was no help : no means to soothe and comfort this 
helpless, speechless misery. He stood for a moment and looked at her, 
powerless and torn with pity, as a parent regards an infant in pain. 

At last, George took Emmy's hand, and led her back into the bed-room, 
irom whence he came out alone. The parting had taken place in that 
anoment, and he was gone. 


'* Thank Heaven tbat is over," George thought, bounding down the st^, 
his sword under his arm, and as he ran swiftly to the alarm-ground, where 
the regiment was mustered, and whither trooped men and officers hunying 
from their billets, his pulse was throbbing and his cheeks flushed : the 
great game of war was going to be played, and he one of the players. 
What a fierce excitement of doubt, hope, and pleasure I What tremendous 
hazards of loss or gain I What were all ijie games of chance he had evev 
played compared to this one P Into all contests requiring athletic skill 
and courage, the young man, from his boyhood upwards, had flung hiio* 
self with all his might.' The champion of his school and his regiment, 
the bravos of his companions had followed him everywhere; from the 
boys' cricket-match to the garrison-races, he had won a hundred of 
triumphs; and wherever he went, women and men had admired and 
envied him. What qualities are there for which a man gets so speedy a 
return of applause, as those of bodily superiority, activity, and valour? 
Time out of mind strength and courage have been the theme of bards and 
romances ; and from the story of Troy down to to-day, poetry has always 
chosen a soldier for a hero. I wonder is it because men are cowards in 
heart that they admire bravery so much, and place military valour so far 
.beyond every other quality for reward and worship? 

So, at the sound of that stirring call to battle, George jumped away 
from the gentle arms in which he had been dallying; not without a feeling 
of shame (although his wife's hold on him had been but feeble), that he 
should have been detained there so long. The same feeling of eagerness 
and excitement was amongst all those friends of his of whom we have 
had occasional glimpses, from the stout senior Major, who led the regiment 
into action, to little Stubble, the Ensign, who was to bear its colours X)n 
that day. * 

The sun was just rising as the march began — ^it was a gallant sight — 
the band led the column, playing the regimental march — ^then came the 
Major in command, riding upon Pyramus, his stout charger — ^then marched 
the grenadiers, their captain at their head ; in the centre were the colours, 
borne by the senior and junior Ensigns — ^theu George came marching at the 
head of his company. He looked up, and smiled at Amelia, and passed 
on ; and even the sound of the music died away. 



IHUS all the superior officers being- 
summoned on duty elsewhere, Jos Sed-^ 
ley wfts left in command of the little 
colony at Brussels, with Amelia inva- 
lided, Isidor his Belgian servant, and 
the bonne, who was maid-of-all-woik 
for the establishment, as a garrisoa 
under him. Though he was disturbed 
in spirit, and his rest destroyed by 
Dobbin's interruption and the occur- 
rences of the morning, Jos nevertheless 
remained for many hours in bed, wake- 
^ ful and rolling about there until his- 

usual hour of rising had arrived. The sun was high in the heavens, and 
our gallant friends of the — th miles on their march, before the civilian 
appeared in his flowered dressing-gown at breakfast. 

About George's absence, his brother-in-law was very easy in mind. 
Perhaps Jos was rather pleased in his heart that Osborne was gone, for 
during George's presence, the other had played but a very secondary part 
in the household, and Osborne did not scruple to show his contempt for 
the stout civilian. But Emmy had always been good and attentive to> 
him. . It was she who ministered to his comforts, who superintended the 
dishes that he liked, who walked or rode with him (as she had many, too 
many, opportunities of doing, for where was George?) and who interposed 
her sweet kind face between his anger and her husband's scorn. Many 
timid remonstrances had she uttered to George in behalf of her brother. 
But the latter in his trenchant way cut these entreaties short. " I 'm an 
honest man," he said, " and if I have a feeling I show it, as an honest man* 
will. How the deuce, my dear, would you have me behave respectfully 
to such a fool as your brother?" So Jos was pleased with George'* 
absence. His plain hat, and gloves on a sideboard, and the idea that 
the owner was away, caused Jos I don't know what secret thrill of plea- 
sure. " He won't be troubling me this morning," Jos thought, " with his- 
dandified airs and his impudence." 

"Put the Captain's hat into the ante-room," he said, to Isidor the- 

" Perhaps he won't want it again," replied the lackey, looking know- 
ingly at his master. He hated George too, whose insolence towards hiioi 
was quite of the English s(Hrt. 


" And ask if Madam is coming to breakfast," Mr. Sedley said with 
great majesty, ashamed to enter with a servant upon the subject of his 
dislike for George. The truth is, he had abused his brother to the valet 
a score of times before. 

Alas ! Madam could not come to breakfast, and cut the tartines that 
Mr. Jos liked. Madam was a great deal too iU, and had been in a 
frightful state ever since her husband's departure, so her honne said. Jos 
showed his sympathy, by pouring her out a large cup of tea. It was his 
way of exhibiting kindness : and he improved on this ; he not only sent 
her breakfast, but he bethought him what delicacies she would most like 
for dinner. 

Isidor, the valet, had IWced on very sulkily, while Osborne's 
servant was disposing of his master's baggage previous to the Captain's 
departure : for in the first place he hated Mr. Osborne, whose conduct to 
him, and to all inferiors, was generally overbearing, (nor does the conti- 
nental domestic like to be treated with insolence as our own better-teinpered 
servants do;) and secondly, he was angry that so many valuables should be 
removed from under his hands, to fall into other people's possession when 
the English discomfiture should arrive. Of this defeat he and a vast 
nimiber of other persons in Brussels and Belgium did not make the 
slightest doubt. The almost universal belief was, that the Emperor would 
divide the Frussi^A and English armies, annihilate one after the other, and 
march into Brussels before three days were over ; when all the moveables 
of his present masters, who would be killed, or fugitives, or prisoners, 
would lawfully become the property of Monsieur Isidor. 

As he helped Jos through his toilsome and complicated dail^ toilette, 
this faithful servant would calculate what he should do with the very^* 
articles with which he was decorating his master's person. He would 
make a present of the silver essence-bottles and toilet knicknacks to a 
young lady of whom he was fond ; and keep the English cutlery and the 
large ruby pin for himself. It would look very smart upon one • of the 
fine frilled shirts, which, with the gold-laced cap and the frogged froCk 
<5oat, that might easily be cut down to suit his shape, and the Captain's 
gold-headed cane, and the great double ring with the rubies, which he 
would Ifcve made into a pair of beautiful earrings, he calculated would 
iDake a perfect Adonis of himself, and render Mademoiselle Beine an easy 
prey. " How those sleeve-buttons will suit me," thought he, as he fixed 
a pair on the fat pudgy wrists of Mr. Sedley. I long for sleeve-buttons ; 
and the Captain's boots with brass spurs, in the next room, cordfcwwhat an 
effect they will make in the All^e-Vert^ ! So while Monsieur Isidor with 
bodily fingers was holding on to his master's nose, and shaving the lower 
part of Jos's face, his imagination was ramblir^ along the Green Avenue, 
dressed out in a frogged coat and lace, and in company with Mademoiselle 
Beine ; he was loitering in spirit on the banks, and examining the barges 
sailing slowly under the cool shadows of the trees by the cand, or refresh- 
ing himself with a mug of Faro at the bench of a beer-house on the .road 
to Ladcen. 

But Mr. Joseph Sedley, luckily for his own peace, no more knew what 


'Was passing in his domestic'^ mind ikan the respected reada: ^d I suspect 
.what John or Mary, whose wages we pay, think of ourselves. What oiir 
servants think of us ! — ^Did we know what our intimates and dear rela- 
tions thought of us, we should live in a world that we should be glad 
to quit, and in a frame of mind and a constant terror, that would be 
perfectly unbearable. So Jos's man was marking his victim down, as 
you see one of Mr. Paynter's assistants in Leadenhall-street ornament 
an unconscious turtle with a placard on which is written, ** Soup 

Amelia's attendant was much less selfishly disposed. Few dependants 
could come near that kind and gentle creature without paying their usual 
tribute of loyalty and affection to her sweet and affectionate nature. And 
it is a fact that Pauline, the cook, consoled h^ mistress more than any;- 
body whom she saw on this wretched morning ; for when she found how 
Amelia remained for hours, silent, motionless, and haggard, by the win- 
dows in which she had placed herself to watch the last bayonets of the 
•column as it marched away, the honest girl took the lady's hand, and said, 
TeneZy MadanWy est-ce quHl n'est jpas amsi a Varmeey mon .homme a moi ? 
with which she burst into tears, and Amelia falling into her arms, did 
likewise, and so each pitied and soothed the other. 

Several times during the forenoon Mr. Jos's Isidor went from his lodg- 
ings into the town, and to the gates of the hotels and lodgingr-houses 
round about the Pare, where the English were congregated, and there 
mingling with other valets, couriers, and lackeys, gathered such news as 
was abroacli and brought back bulletins for his master's information. 
Almost all these gentlemen were in heart partisans of the Emperor, and 
had their opinions about the speedy end of the campaign. The Emperor's 
proclamation from Avesnes had been distributed everywhere plentifully in 
Brussels. "Soldiers !'*' it said, "this is the anniversary of Marengo andFried- 
land, by which the destinies of Europe were twice decided. Then, as after 
Austerlitz, as after Wagram, we ware too genwous. We believed in the 
oaths and promises of princes whom we suffered to remain upon their 
thrones. Let us march once more to meet them. We and they, are we not 
still the same men ? Soldiers ! these same Prussians who are so ain^ant 
to-day, were three to one against you at Jena, and six to one at Montmi- 
rail. Those among you who were prisoners in England can tell their 
comrades what frightful torments they suffered on board the English 
hulks. Madmen ! a moment of prosperity has blinded them, and if they 
-enter into France it wiU be to find a grave there !" But the partisans 
of the French prophesied a more speedy extermination of the Emperor's 
enemies than this ; and it was agreed on all hands that Prussians and 
British would never return except as prisoners in the rear of the conquer- 
ing army. 

« These opinions in the course of the day were brought to operate upon 
Mr. Sedley. He was told that the Duke of Wellington had gone to try 
and rally his army, the advance of which had been utterly erushed the 
night before. 


" Crushed, psbA 1" said Jos, whose heart was pretty stout at break&st- 
time. " The Duke has gone to beat the Emperor as he has beaten all his 
generals before." 

*' His papers are burned, his e£Eects are removed, and his quarters are 
being got ready for the Duke of Dalmatia," Jos's iiiibrmant replied. '* I 
had it from his own maitre d'hStel. Milor Due de Eichemont's people are 
packing up everything. His Grace has fled already, and the Duchess is 
only waiting to see the plate packed to join the Xing of France si 

" The King of France is at Ghent, fellow," replied Jos, affecting incre- 

" He fled last night to Bruges, and embarks to-day from Ostend. The 
Duke de Berri is taken prisoner. Those who wish to be safe had better 
go soon, for the dykes will be open to-morrow, and who can fly when the 
whole country is under water ? " 

" Nonsense, Sir, we are three to one, Sir, against any force Bony^can 
bring in the field," Mr. Sedley objected ; '* the Austrians and the Russians 
are on their march. He must, he shall be crushed," Jos said, slapping hi» 
hand on the table. 

'* The Prussians were three to one at Jena, and he took their army and 
kingdom in a week. They were six to one at Montmirail, and he scattered 
them like sheep. The Austrian army w coming, but with the Empress and 
the King of Bome at its head ; and the Eussians, bah ! the Eussians wiQ 
withdraw. No quarter is to be given to the English, on account of their 
cruelty to our braves on board the infamous pontoons. Look here, here 
it is in black and white. Here's the proclamation of his - Majesty the 
Emperor and King," said the now declared partisan of Napoleon, and 
taking the document from his pocket, Isidor sternly thrust it into hi» 
master's face, and already looked upon the frogged coat and valuables as 
his own spoil. 

Jos was, if not seriously alarmed as yet, at least considerably disturbed 
in mind. " Give me my coat and cap, Sir," said he, " and follow me. I 
will go myself and learn the truth of these reports." Isidor was furious as^ 
Jos put on the braided frock. " Milor had better not wear that military 
coati||s^d he; "the Fr^chmen have sworn not to give quarter to a single 
British soldier." 

" Silence, Sirrah ! " said Jos, with a resolute countenance stiQ, and thrust 
his arm into the sleeve with indomitable resolution, in the performance of 
which heroic act he was found by Mrs. Eawdon Crawley, who at this 
juncture came up to visit Amelia, and entered without ringing at the ante- 
chamber door. 

Eebecca was dressed very neatly and smartly, as usual ; her quiet sleep 
after Eawdon's departure had refreshed her, and her piidi: smiling cheelui 
were quite pleasant to look at, in a town and on a day when everybody 
else's countenance wore the appearance of the deepest anxiety and gloom •. 
She laughed at the attitude in which Jos was discovered, and the struggles 
and convulsions with which the stout gentleman thrust himself into the 
braided coat. 



" Are you preparing to join the army, Mr. Joseph ? " she said. " Is there 
to-be nobody left in Brussels to protect us poor women ?" Jos succeeded 

g ^J!^ V 

in plunging into the coat, and came forward blushing and stuttering out 
excuses to his fair visitor. " How was she after the events of the morning 
— after the fatigues of the ball the night before ? " Monsieur Isidor dis- 
appeared into his master's adjacent bed-room, bearing off the^wered 
dressing-gown. ^P 

" How good of you to ask," said she, pressing one of his hands m both 
her own. " How cool and collected you look when everybody else is 
frightened! How is our dear little Emmy? It must have been an 
awful, awful parting." 

" Tremendous," Jos said. 

"You men can bear anything," replied the lady. "Parting or danger 
are nothing to you. Own now that you were going to join the army, and 
leave us to our fate. I know you were — ^something tells me you were. I 
was so fi-ightened, when the thought came into my head (for I do some- 
times think of you when I am alone, Mr. Joseph !), that I ran off imme- 
diately to beg and entreat you not to fly from us." 

This speech might be interpreted, "My dear Sir, should an accident 
befel the army, and a retreat be necessary, you have a very comfortable 


carriage, in which I propose to take a seat." I don't biow whether Jos 
understood the Words in this sense. But he was profoundly nlortified by 
the lady's inattention to him, during their stay at Brussels. He had never 
been presented to any of Bawdon Crawley's great acquaintances : he had 
scarcely been invited to Rebecca's parties ; for he was too timid to play 
much, and his presence bored George and Bawdon equally, who neither of 
them, perhaps, liked to have a witness of the amusements in which the 
pair chose to indulge. " Ah !" thought Jos, " now she wants me she comes 
to me. When there is nobody elae in the way she can think about old 
Joseph Sedley !" But besides these doubts he felt flattered at the idea 
Eebecca expressed of his courage. 

He blushed a good deal, and- put oir^iti^drof-'iifipc^ance. "I should 
like to see the action," he said. "Eveiy iJIHtti^o^ any spirit would, you 
know. I've seen a little service in In^iy but nothing on this grand 

" You men would sacrifice "anything fdl*^ pleasure," Bebecca answered. 
" Captain Crawley left me tKs morning a«^ guy as if he was going to a 
hunting party. What does- he- care ! Wfittfedo any^of you care for the 
agonies and tortures of a poor forsaken WSfflUtf'? (B- wonder whether he 
could really have been going? to the trOOpl^tkds gpsat lazy gourmand?) 
Oh ! dear Mr. Sedley, I have come* to you*ifi# comlbrt — for consolation. 
I have been on my knees all the' iflS&mingr I tretnble at the frightful 
danger into whioh our husbands, our* friendBj'Our bl^ve troops and allies, 
are rushing. And I come here for shelter, and' fitid aift>ther of my friends — 
the last remaining to me— ben*^^ upon plungitsgi into the dreadful scene !" 

" My dear Madam," Jos rtfpUed, n«r be^ai^'ta be quite soothed. 
" Don't be alarmed. I oiiljp said I should litoWgo— what Briton would 
not ? But my duty^ keeps me here : I can't leave that poor creature in 
the next room." And he pointed with his finger to the door of the 
chamber in which Amelia was. 

" Good noble brother 1 " Bebecca said, putting her handkerchief to her 
eyes, and smelling 'the eau-de-cologne with which it was scented. " I 
have done you injustice : you have got a heart. I thought you had not.'* 

" O, upon my honour ! " Jos said, making a motion as if he would lay 
his l^tt^upon'the spot in question. '* You do me injustice, indeed you 
do— ^fcear Mrs. Crawley." 

" Icrol now your heart is true to your sister. But I remember two 
years ago^— when it was false to me ! " Eebecca said, fixing her eyes upon 
him for an instanty and then turning away into the window. 

Jos blushed violently. That organ which he was accused by Eebecca 
of not possessing began to thump tumultuously. He recalled the days 
when he had fled frem her; and the passion which had once inflamed him 
— ^the days when he had driven her in his curricle : when she had knit the 
green purse for him : wh^ he had sate enraptured gazing at her white 
arms, and bright' eyes. 

" I know- you think me ungrtiteM," Eebecca continued, coming out of 
the window, and once more looking at him and addressing him in a low 
tremulous voioe. " Your* cdldnessr, your averted looks, your manner when 
w«e hav^met (^ late — ^when I came in just now, all proved it to mel But 


were there no reasons why I should avoid yon ? Let your own heiyrt 
answer that question. Do you think my husband was too much inclined 
to welcome you ? The only unkind words I have ever had from him (I 
will do Captain Crawley that justice) have been about you — and most 
cruel, cruel words they were/' 

" Good gracious ! what have I done ?" asked Jos in a flurry of pleasure 
and perplexity ; " what have I done — to — to — ?" 

"Is jealousy nothing?" said Eebecca. "He makes me miserable 
about you. Aid whatever it might have been once— my heart is all his. 
I am innocent now. Am I not, Mr. Sedley ?" 

All Jos's blood tingled with delight, as he surveyed this victim to his 
attractions. A few adroit words, one or two knowing tender glances of the 
eyes, and his heart was inflamed again and his doubts and suspicions 
forgotten. From Solomon downwards, have not wiser men than he been 
cajoled and befooled by women ? "If the worst comes to the worst,'* 
Becky thought, "my retreat is secure; and I have a right-hand seat in 
the barouche." 

"^ There is no knowing into what declarations of love and ardour the 
tumultous passions of Mr. Jos^h might have led him, if Isidor the valet 
had not made his re-appearance at this minute, and begim to busy himself 
about the domestic affairs. Jos, who was just going to gasp out an avowal, 
choked almost with the emotion that he was obliged to restrain. Eebecca 
too bethought her that it was time she should go in and comfort her 
dearest Amelia. " Au revoir^^* she said, kissing her hand to Mr. Joseph, 
and tapped gently at the door of his sister's apartment. As she entered 
and closed the door on herself, he sank down in a chair, and gazed and' 
sighed and puffed portentously. "That coat is very tight for Milor,'* 
Isidor said, still having his eye on the frogs ; but his master heard him 
not : his thoughts were elsewhere : now glowing, maddening, upon the 
contemplation of the enchanting Eebecca : anon shrinking guiltily before 
the vision of the jealous Eawdon Crawley, with his curling, fierce mus- 
tachios, and his terrible duelling pistols loaded and cocked. 

Eebecca's appearance struck Amelia with teiTor, and made her shrink 
back. It recidled her to the world and the remembrance of yesterday. 
In the overpowering fears about to-morrow she had forgotten Eebec^i — 
jealousy— everything except that her husband was gone and^Mi in 
danger. Until this dauntless worldling came in and broke the s^l, and 
lifted the latch, we too have forborne to enter into that sad chamber. 
How long had that poor giil been on her knees ! what hours of speechless 
prayer and bitter prostration had she passed there I The war-chroniclers 
who write brilliant stories of fight and triumph scarcely tell us of these. 
These are too mean parts of the pageant : and you don't hear widows' 
cries or mothers' sobs in the midst of the shouts and jubilation in the 
great Chorus* of Victory. And yet when was the time, that such have 
not cried out : heart-broken, humble Protestants, unheard in the uproar of 
the triumph ! 

After the first movement of terror in Amelia's mind — when Eebeeca's 
green eyes lighted upon her, and rustling in her- fresh silks and brilliant 
ornaments, the latter, tripped- up with extended arms to embrace her-^a 


feeling of anger sncoeeded, and from hemg deadly pale before, her face 
fiiish^ up rcS, and she returned Bebecca's look after a moment with a 
steadiness which surprised and somewhat abashed her rival. 

** Pearest Amelia, you are very imwell," the visitor said, putting forth 
her hand to take Amelia's. " What is it ? I could not rest until I knew 
how you were.** 

Amelia drew back her hand — ^never since her life began had that gentle 
soul refused to believe or to answer any demonstration of good-will or 
affection. But she drew back her hand, and trembled all over. " Why 
are you here, Bebecca ?*' she said, still looking at her solemnly with her 
large eyes. These glances troubled her visitor. 

" She must have seen him give me the letter at the ball," Bebecca 
thought. " Don't be agitated, dear Amelia," she said, looldng down. 
" I came but to see if I could — ^if you were well." 

" Are you well P " said Amelia. " I dare say you are. You don't love 
your husband. You would not be here if you did. Tell me, Bebecca, 
did I ever do you anything but kindness ? " 

"Indeed, Amelia, no," the other said, still hanging down her head. 

" When you were quite poor, who was it that befriended you ? Was I 
not a sister to you ? You saw us all in happier days before he married 
me. I was all in all then to him ; or would he have given up his fortune, 
his family, as he nobly did to make me happy ? Why did you come 
between my love and me P Who sent you to separate those whom God 
joined, and take my darling's heart from me — ^my own husband? Do 
you think you could love him as I did ? His love was everything to me. 
You knew it, and wanted to rob me of it. For shame, Bebecca ; bad and 
wicked woman — ^false friend and false wife." 

" Amelia, I protest before God, I have done my husband no wrong," 
Bebecca said, turning from her. 

"Have you done me no wrong, Bebecca P You did not succeed, but 
you tried. Ask your heart if you did not ? " 

She knows nothing, Bebecca thought. 

" He came back to me. I knew he would. I knew that no falsehood, 
no flattery, could keep him from me long. I knew he would come. I 
prayed^o that he should." 

Th^bor girl spoke these words with a spirit and volubility which 
Bebecc^Hiad never before seen in her, and before which the latter was 
quite dumb. " But what have I done to you," she continued in a more 

Eitifiil tone, "that you should try and take him from meP I had him 
ut for six weeks. You might have spared me those, Bebecca. And yet, 
from the very first day of our wedding, you came and blighted it. Now 
he is gone, are you come to see how unhappy I am P " She continued, 
" You made me wretched enough for the past fortnight : you might have 
spared me to-day." 

" I — I never came here," interposed Bebecca, " with unlucky truth." 

** No. You didn't come. You took him away. Are you come to fetch 

him from me P " she continued in a wilder tone. " He was here, but he is 

gone now. There on that very sofa he sate. Don't touch it. We sate 

and talked there. I was on his knee, and my arms were round his neck. 

A NOVEL imSdm 1 HEBO. m 

Tun -f-n T- T-r. ' TT I 1 1 1.. ' — " ■ — - i • ' ' ■ ■ " ' ' ..i - .i-— • . ...J ' ..1 . T- :. 

imd we said * Our "Father.' Tes, he *was hefte : and they oame and took 
him awi^, but he imttiised me to come hack.'' 

" He iwill come back, my dear," said iBebecca, tonched in spite df 

"Look," said Amelia, •"this is bis sash--wn*t it a pretty colofur?" and 
she took up the Mnge and kissed it. She had tied it round her "Vraist at 
some part of the day. She had forgotten her anger, her jealousy, the Tery 
presence of her rival seemingly. For she walked silently and almosN; with 
a smile on her face, towards the bed, and began to smooth down George's 

Eebecca walked, too, silently away. '" How is Amelia P" asked Jos, who 
dtill held his position in the chair. 

" There should be somebody with her," said Rebecca. " I think she is 
very unwell ;" and she went away with a very grave face, refusing Mr. 
Sedley's entreaties that she would stay and partake of the early dinner 
which he had ordered. 

Eebecca was of a good-natured and obliging disposition; and she liked 
Amelia rather than otherwise. Even her hard words, reproachful as they 
were, were complimentary — ^the groans of a person stinging under defeat. 
Meeting Mrs. O'Dowd, whom the Dean's sermons had by no means com- 
forted, and who was walking very disconsolately in the Pare, Bebecca 
accosted the latter, rather to the surprise of the Major'-s wife, who was not 
accustomed to such marks of politeness from Mrs. Eawdon Crawley, and 
informing her that poor little Mrs. Osborne was in a desperate condition, 
and almost mad with grief, sent off the good-natured Irishwoman straight 
to see if she could console her young favourite. 

" I 've cares of my own enough," Mrs. O'Dowd said, gravely, " and I 
thought poor Amelia would be little wanting for company this day. But 
if she 's so bad as you say, and you can't attend to her, who used to be so 
fond of her, faith I '11 see if I can be of service. And so good maming to 
ye. Madam ;" with which speech and a toss of her head, the lady of the 
repayther took a farewell of Mrs. Crawley, whose company she by no 
means courted. 

Becky watched her marching off, with a smile on her lip. Sh^ad the 
keenest sense of humour, and the Parthian look which the retre Jfcg Mrs. 
0*Dowd flung over her shoulder almost upset Mrs. Crawley's gravity. 
" My service to ye, me fine Madam, and I'm glad to see ye so 
cheerful," thought Peggy. " It 's not you that will cry your eyes out 
with grief, any way." And with this she passed on, and speedily found 
her way to Mrs. Osborne's lodgings. 

The poor soul was still at the bedside, where Eebecca had left her, and 
stood almost crazy with grief. The Major's wife, a stronger minded 
woman, endeavoured her best to comfort her young friend. «* You must 
bear up, Amelia, dear," she said kindly, " for he mustn't find you iU when 
he sends for you after the victory. It 's not you are the only woman that 
are in the hands of God this day." 

" I know that. I am very wicked, very weak," Amelia said. She 
knew her own weakness well enough. The presence of the more resolute 



friend diecked it, however : and she was the better of this control and 
company. They went on till two o'clock ; their hearts were with the 
column as it marched farther and farther away. Dreadful doubt and 
anguish — ^prayers and fears and griefs unspeakable — ^followed the regiment. 
It was the women's tribute to the war. It taxes both alike, and takes 
the blood of the men, and the tears of the women. 

At half-past two an event occurred of daily importance to Mr. Joseph : 
the dinner hour arrived. Warriors may fight and perish, but he must 
dine. He came into Amelia's room to see if he could coax her to share 
that meal.* " Try," said he ; "the soup is very good. Do try, Emmy," 
and he kissed her hand. Except when she was married, he had not done 
so much for years before. " You are very good and kind, Joseph," she 
said. " Everybody is, but, if you please, I will stay in my room to-day." 

The savour of the soup, however, was agreeable to Mrs. O'Dowd's 
nostrils : and she thought she would bear Mr. Jos company. So the two 
sate down to their meal. " Grod bless the meat," said the Major's wife> 
solemnly : she was thinking of her honest Mick, riding at the head of his 
recent : " 'Tis but a bad dinner those poor boys will get to-day," she 
said, with a sigh, and then, like a philosopher, fell to. 

Jos's spirits rose with his meal. He would drink the regiment's health -, 
or, indeed, take any other excuse to indulge in a glass of champagne. 
"We'll drink to O'Dowd and the brave — th,'! said he, bowing gal- 
lantly to his guest. " Hey, Mrs. O'Dowd. Fill Mrs. O'Dowd's glass, 

But all of a sudden, Isidor started, and the Major's wife laid down her 
knife and fork. The windows of the room were open, and looked south- 
ward, and a dull distant sound came over the sun-lighted roofs from that 
direction. " What is it ? " said Jos. " Why don't you pour, you rascal ? " 

" Ceat lefeu," said Isidor, running to the balcony. 

" God defend us ; it 's cannon 1 " Mrs. O'Dowd cried, starting up, and 
followed too to the window. A thousand pale and anxious faces might 
have been seen looking from other casements. And presently it seemed 
as if the whole population of the city rushed into the streets. 




^r-j ^ 0^ peaceful London City, 
^ have never beheld — and 
please God never shall 
witness — such a scene of 
hurry and alarm, as that 
which Brussels presented. 
Crowds rushed to the 
Namur gate, from which 
direction the noise pro- 
ceeded, and many rode 
along the level chatisseey 
to be in advance of any 
intelligence from the 
_ ^ army. Each man asked 

his neighbour for news ; 
and even great English lords and ladies condescended to speak to persons 
whom they did not know. The friends of the French went abroad, wild with 
excitement, and prophecying the triumph of their Emperor. The mer- 
chants closed their shops, and came out to swell the general chorus of alarm 
and clamour. Women rushed to the churches, and crowded the chapels, and 
knelt and prayed on the flags and steps. The dull sound of the cannon went 
on rolling, rolling. Presently caniages with travellers began to leave the 
town, galloping away by the Ghent barrier. The prophecies of the French 
partisans began to pass for facts. "He has cut the armies in two," it was 
said. " He is marching straight on Brussels. He will overpower the 
English, and be here to-night." " He will overpower the English," 
shrieked Isidor to his master, "and will be here to-night." The man 
bounded in and out from the lodgings to the street, always returning with 
some fresh particulars of disaster. Jos's face grew paler and paler. 
Alarm began to take entire possession of the stout civilian. All the 
champagne he drank brought no courage to him. Before sunset he was 
worked up to such a pitch of nervousness as gratified his friend Isidor to 
behold, who now counted surely upon the spoils of the owner of the laced 

The women were away all this time. After hearing the firing for a 
moment, the stout Major's wife bethought her of her friend in the next 
chamber, and ran in to watch, and if possible to console, Amelia. The 
idea that she had that helpless and gentle creature to protect, gave 
additional strength to the natural courage of the honest Irishwoman. She 

T 2 


passed five hours by her friend's side, sometimes in remonstrance, some- 
times talking cheerfuUy, oftener in silence, and terrified mental supplica- 
tion. " I never let go her hand once," said the stout lady afterwards, 
" until after sunset, when the firing was over." Pauline, the bonney was 
on her knees at church hard by, praying for son homme a elle. 

When the noise of the cannonading was over, Mrs. O'Dowd issued out of 
Amelia's room into the parlour adjoining, where Jos sate with two emptied 
flasks, and courage entii*ely gone. Once or twice he had ventured into his 
sister's bed-room, looking very much alarmed, and as if he would say 
something. But the Major's wife kept her place, and he went away with- 
out disbi^hening himself of his speech. He was ashamed to tell her that 
he wanted to fly. 

But when she made her appearance in the dining-room, where he sate 
in the twilight in the cheerless company of his empty champagne-bottles, 
he began to open his mind to her. 

" Mrs. O'Dowd," he said, " hadn't you better get Amelia ready f" 
"Are you going to take her out a walk?" said the Major's lady; 
** sure she 's too weak to stir." 

"I — I've ordered the carriage," he said, "and — and post-horses; 
Isidor is gone for them," Jos continued. 

" What do you want with driving to-night ?" answered the lady, " Isn't 
she better on her bed ? I've just got her to lie down." 

" Get her up," said Jos ; " she must get up, 1 say :" and he stamped 
his foot energetically. ** I say th^ hoBses are ordered — ^yes, the horses ai*e 
ordered. It 's all over, and — " 

" And what ? " asked Mrs. O-Powd. 

" I'm off for Ghent," Jos answered. " Everybody is going ; there's a 
place for you ! We shall start in half-an-hour." 

The Major's wife looked tft him with infinite scorn. " I don't move till 
O'Dowd gives me the route," said sihe. " You may go if you like, Mr. 
Sedley ; but, faith, Amelia and I stop here." 

" She shall go," said Jos, with another stamp of his foot. Mrs. O'Dowd 
put herself with arms akimbo before the bed-room door. 

" Is it her mother you're going to take her to ?" she said ; " or do you 
want to go to Mamma yourself, Mr. Sedley ? Good marning — ^a pleasant 
journey to ye, sir. JBon voyagCy as they say, and take my counsel, and 
shave off them mustachios, or they'll bring you into misdiief." 

" D — ^n !" yelled out Jos, wild with fear, rage, and mortification ; and 
Isidor came in at this juncture, swearing in his turn. "P<w de chevaux, 
•sacrebleu /" hissed out the furious domestic. AH the horses were gone. 
Jos was not the only man in Brussels seized with panic that day. 

But Joa's fears, great and cruel as they were already, were destined to 
increase to an almost frantic pitch before the night was over. It has been 
mentioned how Pauline, the bonney had son Tiomme a elle^ also in the ranks 
of the army that had gone out to meet the Emperor Napoleon. This 
lover was a native of Brussels, and a Belgian hussar. The troops of his 
nation signalized themselves in this war for anything but courage, and 
young Van Cutsum, Pauline's admirer, was too good a soldier to disobey 
his Colonel's orders to run away. WhUst in ganison at Brussels young 


Eegulus (lie had been born in the revolutionary times) found his great 
comfort, and passed almost all his leisure moments in Pauline's kitchen ; 
and it was with pockets and holsters, crammed full of good things from 
her larder, that he had taken leave of his weeping sweetheart, to proceed 
upon the campaign a few days before. 

As far as his regiment was concerned, this campaign was over now. 
They had formed a part of the division under the command of his Sovereign 
apparent, the Prince of Orange, and as respected length of swords and 
mustachios, and the richness of uniform and equipments, Regulus and 
his comrades looked to be as gallant a body of men as ever trumpets 
sounded for. 

When Ney dashed upon the advance of the allied troops, carrying one 
position after the other, until the arrival of the great body of the British 
army from Brussels changed the aspect of the combat of Quatre Bras, the 
squadrons among which Eegulus rode showed the greatest activity in 
retreating before the French, and were dislodged from one post and another 
which they occupied with perfect alacrity on their part. Their movements 
were only checked by the advance of the British in their rear. Thus 
forced to halt, the enemy's cavalry (whose bloodthirsty obstinacy cannot 
be too severely reprehended) had at length an opportunity of coming to 
close quarters with the brave Belgians before them ; who preferred to 
encounter the British rather than the French, and at once turning tail rode 
through the English regiments that were behind them, and scattered in all 
directions. The regiment in fact did not exist any more. It was nowhere. 
It had no head quarters. Eegulus found himself galloping many miles from 
the field of action, entirely alone ; and whither should he fly for refuge so 
naturally as to that kitchen and those faithful arms in which Pauline had 
so often welcomed him ? 

At some ten o'clock the clinking of a sabre might have been heard up 
the stair of the house where the Osbomes occupied a storey in the con- 
tinental fashion. A knock might have been heard at the kitchen door ; 
and poor Pauline, come back from church, fainted almost with terror as 
she opened it and saw before her her haggard hussar. He looked as pale 
as the midnight dragoon who came to disturb Leonora. Pauline would 
have screamed, but that her cry would have called her masters, and dis- 
covered her friend. She stifled her scream, then, and leading her hero 
into the kitchen, gave him beer, and the choice bits from the dinner, which 
Jos had not had the heart to taste. The hussar showed he was no ghost 
by the prodigious quantity of flesh and beer which he devoured — and 
dming the mouthfuls he told his tale of disaster. 

His regiment had performed prodigies of courage, and had withstood 
for a while the onset of the whole French army. But they were over- 
whelmed at last, as was the whole British army by this time. Ney 
destroyed each regiment as it came up. The Belgians in vain interposed" 
to prevent the butchery of the English. The Brunswickers were routed 
and had fled' — ^their Duke was killed. It was a general debacle. He 
sought to drown his sorrow for the defeat in floods of beer. 

Isidor, who had come into the kitchen, heard the conversation, and 
rushed out to infbnn his master. ** It is all over/' he shrieked to Jos. 



*< Milor Duke is a prisoner ; the Duke of Brunswick is killed ; the British 
army is in full flight ; there is oulv one man escaped, and he is in the 
kitchen now — come and hear him. So Jos tottered into that apartment 
where Eegulus still sate on the kitchen-table, and dung fast to his flagon 

iJiliitiL S 

of beer. In the best French which he could muster, and which was in sooth 
of a very ungrammatical sort, Jos besought the hussar to tell his tale. 
The disasters deepened as B^gulus spoke. He was the only man of his 
regiment not slain on the field. He had seen the Duke of Brunswick fall, 
the black hussars fly, the Ecossais pounded down by the cannon. 

"And the — th?" gasped Jos. 

" Cut in pieces," said tlie hussar — ^upon which Pauline crying out, " O 
my mistress, ma bonne petite dame^^ went off fairly into hysterics, and 
filled the house with her screams. 

Wild with terror, !Mr. Sedley knew not how or where to seek for safety. 
He rushed from the kitchen back to the sitting-room, and cast an appeal- 
ing look at Amelia's door, which Mrs. O'Dowd had closed and locked in 
his face; but he remembered how scornfully the latter had received him, 
and after pausing and listening for a brief space at the door, he left it, 
and resolved to go into the street, for the first time that day. So, seizing 
a candle, he looked about for his gold-laced cap, and found it lying in its 
usual place, on a console-table, in the ante-room, placed before a mirror 
at which Jos used to coquet, always giving his side-locks a twirl, and his 
cap the proper cock over his eye, before he went forth to make appearance 
in public. Such is the force of habit, that even in the midst of his terror 
he began mechanically to twiddle with his hair, and arrange the cock of 

^^v Tj^ ^^ ^>'/^/A^iy rff v/, / , /{^//i>^/^Wi 





his hat. Then he looked amazed at the pale face in the glass before 
him, and especially at his mustachios, which had attained a rich growth 
in the course of near seven weeks, since they had come into the world. 
They toill mistake me for a military man, thought he, remembering Isidor's 
warning, as to the massacre with which all the defeated British army was 
threatened; and staggering back to his bed-chamber, he began wildly pulling 
the bell which summoned his valet. 

Isidor answered that summons. Jos had sunk in a chair — ^he had torn 
off his neckcloths, and turned down his collars, and was sitting with both 
his hands lifted to his throat. 

" Coupez-moi, Isidor," shouted he ; " vite ! Coupez-moi /" 

Isidor thought for a moment he had gone mad, and that he wished his 
valet to cut his throat. 

" LesmomtaclieB" gasped Jos ; " lea moustaches — coupy^ Tusy, vite /" — 
his French was of this sort — ^voluble, as we have said, but not remarkable 
for grammar. 

. Isidor swept off the mustachios in no time with the razor, and heard 
^th inexpressible delight his master's orders that he should fetch a hat 

sat T4!fSIT FAUBk 

andftplBm coat* "Na pati^ fho-^htM miUtatp-^onnyr^dtmnyja voo^ 
prmmy. dsAor*"-*^i^ere Jos's words»-^tbe coat and cap were at last hifr 

This, gift being made, Jos selected a plain black coat and wabtooat 
from his stocky and put on a large white neckcloth, and a plain beaver. 
m he could have got a shovel-hai; he would have worn it. As it was,, 
you would have fancied he was a flourishing, large parson of the Church 
of England* 

** Vemty maiatewmg^^ he continued, " meeny — ally-^rparty — dong Ic^ 
roo" AJad so having said, he plunged swiftly down the stairs of the* 
house, and passed into the street. 

Although Eegulus had vowed that he was the only man of his regiment 
or of the allied army, almost, who had escaped being cut to pieces by Ney, it 
f^peared that his statement was incorrect, and that a good number more 
of the supposed victims had survived the massacre. Many scoi»s of 
Eegulus's comrades had found their way back to Brussels, and*— all agrce-^ 
ing that they had run away — filled the whole town with an idea of the 
defeat of the allies. The arrival of the French was expected hourly ; the- 
panic continued, and preparations for flight went on everywhere. No 
horses I thought Jos, in terror. He made Isidor inquire of scores of 
persons, whether they had any to lend or sell, and his heart sank withiu 
him, at the negative answers returned everywhere. Should he take the 
journey on foot ? Even fear could not render that ponderous body so- 

Almost all the hotels occupied by the Bh^sh in Brussels face the 
Pare, and Jos wandered irresolutely about ia this quarter, with crowds^ 
of other people, oppressed as he was by fear and curiiasity. Some families- 
he saw more happy than himself, having discovered a team of horses, and 
rattling through the streets in retreat ; others again there were whose case 
was like his own, and who could not for any bribes or entreaties procure 
the necessary means of flight. Amongst these would-be- fugitives, Jos 
remarked the Lady Bai^acres and her daughter, who sate in her carriage 
in the porte-cochere of their hotel; all their imperials packed, and the 
only drawback to whose fli^t was tiie same want of motive power which 
kept Jos stationary^ 

Eebecca. Crawley ooeupiM- apartments, in this hotel ; and had before this 
period had sundry hostile meetings* with the ladies of the Bareacres 
family. My Lady Baneacres cut Mrs. Crawley on the stairs when they 
met by chance ; and in all places where the latter's name was men- 
tioned, spoke peraeveringly ill of her neighbour. The Countess was^ 
shocked at the familiarity of General Tufto with the aide-de-camp's wife. 
The Lady Blanche avoided her as if she had- been an infectious disease. 
Only the Earl himself kept up)aj dy occasional acquaintance wth her, when 
out of the jmisdiijtion ofi his : l&dies^ 

Eebecca had her revenge now upon these insolent enemies. It became 
known in the hotel that Captain Crawley had been left behind, and when 
the panic began, Lady Bareacres condescended to send her maid to the 
Captain's wife with her Ladyship's compliments, and a desire to know the 
gripe of Mrs. Crawley's horses. Mrs. Crawley returned a note with her 


compliments^ and; an intimation tbat it was not her custom tq tmnaaet 
bargains with ladies' maids. 

This curt reply brought the Earl in person to Becky's apartment ; but 
he could get no mor« success than the first ambassador. '^ Send a lady's 
maid to me I'' Mrs. Crawley cried in great anger; " why didn't my Lady 
Bareacr^s tell me to go and saddle the horses 1 Is it her Ladyship that 
wants to escape, or her Ladyship's /<?w»i^ de chambre ?" And this was all 
the answer that the Earl bore back to his Countess. 

What will not necessity do ? The Countess herself actually came to 
wait upon Mrs. Crawley on the failure of her second envoy. She entreated 
her to name her own price ; she even offered to invite Becky to Bareacreg^ 
House, if the latter would but give her the means of returning to that 
residence. Mrs. Crawley sneered at her. 

" I don't want to be waited on by bailiffs in livery,'^ she said ; " you 
will never get back though most probably — at least, not you and youE 
diamonds together. The French will have those. They will be here in 
two hours, and I shall be half way to Ghent by that time. I would nob 
sell you my horses, no, not for the two largest diamonds that your Ladyship 
wore at the ball." Lady Bareacres trembled with rage and terror. The 
diamonds were sewed into her habit, and secreted in my Lord's padding 
and boots. " Woman, the diamonds are at the banker's, and I will havo 
the horsesj" she said. Eebecca laughed in her face. The infuriate Coun- 
tess went below, and sate in her carriage ; her maid, her courier, and her 
husband were sent once more through the town, each to look for cattle ; and 
wo betide those who came last ! Her Ladyship was resolved on departing 
the very instant the horses arrived from any quarter— with her husband 
or without him. 

Eebecca had the pleasure of seeing her Ladyship in the horseless car» 
riage, and keeping her eyes fixed upon her, and bewailing, in the loudest 
tone of voice, the Countess's perplexities. "Not to be able to get horses ! " 
she said, " and to have all those diamonds sewed in to the carriage cushions! 
What a prize it will be for the Erench when they come ! — the carriage and 
ihe diamonds I mean; not the lady!" She gave this information to 
the landlord, to the servants, to the guests, and the innumerable straggler* 
about the court-yard. Lady Bareacres could have shot her from the car* 

It was while enjoying the humihation of her enemy that Eebecca caught 
sight of Jos, who made towards her directly he perceived her. 

That altered, frightened, fat face, told his secret well enough, Hi& 
too wanted to fly, and was on the look-out for the means of escape. " He 
shall buy my horses," thought Eebecca, " and I '11 ride the mare." 

Jos. walked up to his friend, and put the question for the hundredtlv 
time during the past hour,. " Did she know where horses were to be had? " 

" What, you fly ?" said Eebecca, with a laugh,. " I thought you were 
the champion of all the ladies, Mr. Sedley." 

" It— I 'm not a military man," gasped he. 

" And Amelia ? — ^Who is to protect that poor little sister of yours/" 
asked Eebeoea* ** You surely would* not desert her ?" 

** Wlufct^good. can I do her^ suppose— suppose the. eiwemy arrive ?" Jos 


answered. " They'll spare the women ; but my man tells me that they 
have taken an oath to give no quarter to the men — ^the dastardly cowards." 

" Horrid !" cried Eebecca, enjoying his perplexity. 

" Besides, I don't want to desert her," cried the brother. " She iharCt 
be deserted. There is a seat for her in my carriage, and one for you, dear 
Mrs. Crawley, if you will come ; and if we can get horses — " sighed he — 

"I hare two to sell," the lady said. Jos could have flung himself into 
her arms at the news. " Get the carriage, Isidor," he cried ; " we Ve 
found them — ^we have found them." 

" My horses never were in harness," added the lady. " Bulfinch would 
kick the carriage to pieces, if you put him in the traces." 

''But he is quiet to ride?" asked the civilian. 

*' As quiet as a lamb, and as fast as a hare," answered Eebecca. 

"Do you think he is up to my weight?" Jos said. He was already 
on his back, in imagination, without ever so much as a thought for poor 
Amelia. What person who loved a horse-speculation could resist such a 
temptation ? 

In reply, Eebecca asked him to come into her room, whither he followed 
her quite breathless to conclude the bargain. Jos seldom spent a half 
hour in his life which cost him so much money. Eebecca measuring the 
value of the goods which she had for sale by Jos's eagerness to purchase, 
as well as by the scarcity of the article, put upon her horses a price so 
prodigious as to make even the civilian draw back, " She would sell 
both or neither," she said, resolutely. Eawdon had ordered her not to 
part with them for a price less than that which she specified. Lord 
Bareacres below would give her the same money — and with all her love 
and regard for the Sedley family, her dear Mr. Joseph must conceive that 
poor people must live — ^nobody, in a word, could be more aiFectionate, but 
more firm about the matter of business. 

Jos ended by agreeing, as might be supposed of him. The sum he had 
to give her was so large that he was obliged to ask for time ; so large as 
to be a little fortune to Eebecca, who rapidly calculated that with this 
sum, and the sale of the residue of Eawdon's effects, and her pension as a 
widow should he fall, she would now be absolutely independent of the 
world, and might look her weeds steadily in the face. 

Once or twice in the day she certainly had herself thought about flying. 
But her reason gave her better counsel. " Suppose the French do come," 
thought Becky, " what can they do to a poor ofiicer's widow ? Bah I the 
times of sacks and sieges are over. We shall be let to go home quietly, 
or I may live pleasantly abroad with a snug little income." 

Meanwhile Jos and Isidor went off to the stables to inspect the newly- 
purchased cattle. Jos bade his man saddle the horses at once. He 
would ride away that very night, that veiy hour. And he left the valet 
busy in getting the horses ready, and went homewards himself to prepare 
for his departure. It must be secret. He would go to his chamber by 
the back entrance. He did not care to face Mrs. O'Dowd and Amelia, 
and own to them that he was about to run. 

By the time Jos's bargain with Eebecca was completed, and his horses 
kad been visited and examined, it was almost morning once more. But 


though midnight was long passed, there was no rest for the city ; the 
people were up, the lights in the houses flamed, crowds were still about 
the doors, and the streets were busy. Eumours of various natures went 
still from mouth to mouth : one report averred that the Prussians had been 
utterly defeated ; another that it was the English who had been attacked 
and conquered ; a third that the latter had held their ground. This 
last rumour gradually got strength. No Frenchmen had made their 
appearance. Stragglers had come in from the army bringing reports more 
and more favourable : at last an aide-de-camp actually reached Brussels 
with despatches for the Commandant of the place, who placarded presently 
through the town an official announcement of the success of the allies at 
Guatre Bras, and the entire repulse of the French under Ney after a six 
hours' battle. The aide-de-camp must have arrived sometime while Jos 
and Rebecca were making their bargain together, or the latter was inspect- 
ing his purchase. When he reached his own hotel, he found a score of its 
numerous inhabitants on the threshold discoursing of the news ; there was 
no doubt as to its truth. And he went up to communicate it to the ladies 
under his charge. He did not think it was necessaiy to tell them how he 
had intended to take leave of them, how he had bought horses, and what a 
price he had paid for them. 

But success or defeat was a minor matter to them, who had only thought 
for the safety of those they loved. AmeKa, at the news of the victory, 
became still more agitated even than before. She was for going that mo- 
ment to the army. She besought her brother with tears to conduct her 
thither. Her doubts and terrors reached their paroxysm ; ana the poor 
girl, who for many hours had been plunged into stupor, raved and ran 
hither and thither in hysteric insanity — ^a piteous sight. No man writhing 
in pain on the hard-fought field fifteen miles off, where lay, after their 
struggles, so many of the brave — ^no man suffered more keenly than this 
poor harmless victim of the war. Jos could not bear the sight of her pain. 
He left his sister in the charge of her stouter female companion, and 
descended once more to the threshold of the hotel, where everybody still 
fingered, and talked, and waited for more news. 

It grew to be broad daylight as they stood here, and fresh news began 
to arrive from the war, brought by men who had been actors in the scene. 
Waggons and long country carts laden with wounded came rolling into the 
town ; ghastly groans came from within them, and haggard faces looked up 
sadly from out of the straw. Jos Sedley was looking at one of these 
carriages with a painftd curiosity — the moans of the people within were 
frightftil — the wearied horses could hardly pull the cart. Stop I stop ! a 
feeble voice cried from the straw, and the carriage stopped opposite Mr. 
Sedley's hotel. 

" It is George, I know it is !" cried Amelia, rushing in a moment to the 
balcony, with a pallid face and loose flowing hair. It was not George, 
however, but it was the next best thing : it was news of him. 

It was poor Tom Stubble, who had marched out of Brussels so gallantly 
twenty-four hours before, bearing the colours of the regiment, which he 
had defended very gallantly upon the field. A French lancer had speared 
the young ensign in the leg, who fell, stiU bravely holding to his flag. At 

284 tAiriTT FAIR. 

the oonclttsion of the engagement, a place had been found for the poor boy 
in a cart, and he had been brought back to Brussels. 

" Mr. Sedley, Mr. Sedley I " cried the boy faintly, and Jos came up 
almost frightened at the appeal. He had not at first distinguished wha 
it was that called him. 

Little Tom Stubble held out his hot and feeble hand. " I 'm to be 
taken in here," he said. " Osborne — ^and — and Dobbin said I was ; and 
you are to give the man two Napoleons : my mother will pay you." This- 
young fellow's thoughts, during the long feverish hours passed iii the 
cart, had been wandering to his father's parsonage wliich he had quitted' 
only a few months before, and he had sometimes forgotten his pain in 
that delirium. 

The hotel was large, and the people kind, and all the inmates of the 
cart were taken in and placed on various couches. The young ensign. 
was conveyed up-stairs to Osborne's quarters. Amelia and the Major's 
wif6 had rushed down to him, when the latter had recognized him from the 
balcony. You may fancy the feelings of these women when they were 
told that the day was over, and both their husbands were safe ; in what 
mute rapture Amelia fell on her good friend's neck, and embraced her j 
in what a gi*ateful passion of prayers she fell on her knees, and thankedt 
the Power which had saved her husband. 

* Our young lady, in her fevered and nervous condition, could have had 
no more salutary medicine prescribed for her by any physician than that 
which chance put in her way. She and Mrs. O'Dowd watched incessantly 
by the wounded lad, whose pains were very severe, and in the duty thu& 
forced upon her, Amelia had not time to brood over her personal anxieties^, 
or to give herself up to her own fears and forebodings after her wont.. 
The young patient told in his simple fashion the events of the day, and 
the actions of our friends of the gallant — ^th. They had suffered 
severely. They had lost very many officers and men. The Major's, 
horse had been shot under him as the regiment charged, and they all 
thought that O'Dowd was gone, and that Dobbin had got his majority^, 
until on their retura from the charge to their old ground, the Major 
Was discovered seated on Pyramus's carcase, refreshing himself from » 
case-bottle. It was Captain Osborne that cut down the French lancer 
who had speared the ensign. Amelia turned so pale at the notion, that 
Mrs. O'Dowd stopped the young ensign in this story. And it was Cap- 
tain Dobbin who at the end of the day, though wounded himself, took up 
the lad in his arms and carried him to the sm-geon, and thence to the cart 
which was to bring him back to Brussels. And it was he who promised 
the driver two louis if he would make his way to Mr. Sedley's hotel ia 
the city ; and tell Mrs. Captain Osborne that the action was over, and that 
her husband was unhurt and well. 

" Indeed, but he has a good heart that William Dobbin," Mrs. O'Dowd* 
said, ** though he is always laughing at me." 

Young Stubble vowed there was not such another officer in the army^ 
and never ceased his praises of the senior captain, his modesty, his kind* 
ness^ and his admirable coolness in the field. To these parts of the- 
oonverBatioUj Amelia lent a very distracted attention : it was only whea 


George was spoken of that she lidteiieQ, and when he was not mentioned, 
she thought about him. 

In tendmg her patient, and in fhii&ing of the wonderful escapes of the 
day before, her second day passed away not too slowly with Amelia. There 
was only one man in the army for her : and as long as he was well, it must 
be owned that its movements interested her little. All the reports which 
Jos brought from the streets fell very vaguely on her ears ; though they 
were sufficient to give that timorous gentleman, and many other peqple 
then in Brussels, every disquiet. The French had been repulsed certainly, 
but it was after a severe and doubtful struggle, and witti only a division of 
the French army. The Emperor, with the main body, was away at Ligny, 
where he had utterly annihilated the Prussians, and was now free to bring 
his whole force to bear upon the allies. The Duke of Wellington was 
retreating upon the capital, and a great battle must be fought under its 
walls probably, of which the chances were more than doubtful. The Duke 
of Wellington had but twenty thousand British troops on whom he could 
rely, for the Germans were raw militia, the Belgians disaffected ; and with 
this handful his Grace had to resist a hundred and fifty thousand men that 
had broken into Belgium under Napoleon. Under Napoleon ! What warrior 
was there, however famous and skilful, that could fight at odds with him ? 

Jos thought of all these things, and trembled. So did all the rest of 
Brussels — where people felt that the fight of the day before was but the 
prelude to the greater combat which was imminent. One of the armies 
opposed to the Emperor was scattered to the winds already. The few 
English that could be brought to resist him would perish at their posts, 
and the conqueror would pass over their bodies into the city. Woe be to 
those whom he found there ! Addresses were prepared, public function- 
aries assembled and debated secretly, apartments were got Tcady, and 
tricoloured laanners and triumphal emblems manufactured, to welcome the 
arrival of His Majesty the Emperor and King. 

The emigration still continued, and wherever families could find means 
of departure, tbey fled. When Jos, on the afternoon of the 17th of June, 
went to Bebecca's hotel, he found that the great Bareacres' carriage had at 
length ToUed away from the jporte-cochere. The Earl had procured a pair 
of horses somehow, in spite of Mrs. Crawley, and was rolling on the road 
to Ghent. Louis the Desired, was getting ready his portmanteau in that 
<iity, too. It seemed as if Misfortune was never tired of worrying into 
motion that unwieldy exile. 

Jos felt that the delay of yesterday had been only a respite, and that his 
dearly bought horses must of a surety be put into requisition. His 
agonies were very severe all this day. As long as there was an English 
army between Brussels and Napoleon, there was no need of immediate 
flight ; but he had his horses brought irom their distant stables, to the 
stables in the court-yard of the hotel where he lived ; so that they might 
be under his own eyes, and beyond the risk of violent abduction. Isidor 
watched the stable-door constantly, and had the horses saddled, to be ready 
for the start. He longed intensely for that event. 

After the reception of the previous day, Eebecca did not care to come 
near her dear Amelia. She clipped the bouquet which George had brought 

286 y^KITY FAIB. 

her, and gave fresh water to the flowers, and read over the letter whidi 
he had sent her. " Poor wretch/' she said, twirling round the little hit 
of paper in her Angers, " how I could crush her with this 1 — and it is for 
a tning like this that she must break her heart forsooth — ^for a man who 
is stupid — a coxcomb — and who does not care for her. My poor good 
Sawdon is worth ten of this creature." And then she fell to t hinking 
what she should do if — ^if anything happened to poor good Eawdon, and 
what a great piece of luck it was thai he had left his horses behind. 

In the course of this day too, Mrs. Crawley, who saw not without anger 
the Bareacres party drive off, bethought her of the precaution which the 
countess had taken, and did a little needlework for own advantage ; she 
stitched away the mtgor part of her trinkets, bills, and bank-notes about 
her person, and so prepared, was ready for any event — to fly if she 
thought fit, or to st^ and welcome the conqueror, were he Englishman or 
Frenchman. And I am not sure that she did not dream that night of 
becoming a duchess and Madame la Mar&hale, while Bawdon wrapped in 
his cloak, and making his bivouac under the rain at Mount Saint John, 
was thinldng, with all the force of his heart, about the little wife whom he 
had left behind him. 

The next day was a Sunday. And Mrs. Major O'Dowd had the satis- 
faction of seeing both her patients refreshed in health and spirits by some 
rest which they had taken during the night. She herself had slept on a 
great chair in Amelia's room, ready to wait upon her poor friend or 
the ensign, should either need her nursing. "When morning came, thia 
robust woman went back to the house where she and her Major had their 
billet ; and here performed an elaborate and splendid toilette, befitting the 
day. And it is very possible that whilst alone in that chamber, which 
her husband had inhabited, and where his cap still lay on the pillow, and 
his cane stood in the comer, one prayer at least was sent up to Heaven 
for the welfare of the brave soldier, Michael O'Dowd. 

When she returned she brought her prayer-book with her, and her 
uncle the Dean's famous book of sermons, out of which she never failed to 
read eveiy Sabbath : not understanding all, haply, not pronouncing many 
of the words aright, which were long and abstruse — ^for the Dean was a 
learned man, and loved long Latin words — but with great gravity, vast 
emphasis, and with tolerable correctness in the main. How often has my 
Mick listened to these sermons, she thought, and me reading in the cabia 
of a calm I She proposed to resume this exercise on the present day, with 
Amelia and the wounded ensign for a congregation. The same service 
was read on that day in twenty thousand churches at the same hour ; and 
millions of British men and women, on their knees, implored protection of 
the Father of aU. 

They did not hear the noise which disturbed our little congregation at 
Brussels. Much louder than that which had interrupted them two days 
previously, as Mrs. O'Dowd was reading the service in her best voice, the 
cannon of Waterloo began to roar. 

When Jos heard that dreadful sound, he made up his mind that he 
would bear this perpetual recurrence of terrors no longer, and would fly at 
once. He mshed into the sick man's room, where our three friends bad 


paused in their prayers, and further interrupted them by a passionate 
appeal to Amelia. 

" I can't stand it any more, Emmy/' he said ; "I won't stand it ; and 
you must come with me. I have bought a horse for you — ^never mind 
at what price — and you must dress and come with me, and ride behind 

" God forgive me, Mr. Sedley, but you are no better than a coward,'* 
Mrs. O'Dowd said, laying down the book, 

" I say come, Amelia," the civilian went on ; " never mind what she 
says; why are we to stop here and be butchered by the Frenchmen?" 

" You forget the — th, my boy," said the little Stubble, the wounded 
hero, from his bed — "and — and you won't leave me, will you, Mrs. 

" No, my dear fellow," said she, going up and kissing the boy. " No 
harm shall come to you while /stand by. I don't budge till I get the 
word from Mick. A pretty figure I'd be, wouldn't I, stuck behind that 
chap on a pillion?" 

This image made the young patient to burst out laughing in his bed, 
and even made Amelia smile. " I don't ask her," Jos shouted out — " I 
don't ask that — ^that Irishwoman, but you, Amelia ; once for aU, will you 

'* Without my husband, Joseph?" Amelia said with a look of wonder, 
and gave her hand to the Major's wife. Jos's patience was exhausted. 

" Qx)od bye, then," he said, shaking his fist in a rage, and slamming the 
door by which he retreated. And tMs time he really gave his order for 
march : and mounted in the court-yard. Mrs. O'Dowd heard the clatter- 
ing hoofs of the horses as they issued from the gate ; and looking on, made 
many scornful remarks on poor Joseph as he rode down the street with 
Isidor after him in the laced cap. The horses, which had not been exercised 
for some days, were lively, and sprang about the street. Jos, a clumsy 
and timid horseman, did not look to advantage in the saddle. " Look at 
him, AmeKa, dear, driving into the parlour window. Such a bull in a 
china-shop /never saw." And presently the pair of riders disappeared 
at a canter down the street leading in the direction of the Ghent road. 
Mrs. O'Dowd pursuing them with a fire of sarcasm so long as they were 
in sight. 

All that day from morning until past sunset, the cannon never ceased to 
roar. It was dark when the cannonading stopped all of a sudden. 

All of us have read of what occurred during that interval. The tale is 
in every Englishman's mouth ; and you and I, who were children when 
the great battle was won and lost, are never tired of hearing and recount- 
ing the history of that famous action. Its remembrance rankles still in 
the bosoms of millions of the countrymen of those brave men who lost the 
day. They pant for an opportunity of revenging that humiliation ; and if 
a contest, ending in a victory on their part, should ensue, elating them in 
their turn, and leaving its cursed legacy of hatred and rage behind to us, 
there is no end to the so-called glory and shame, and to the alternations 
of successful and unsuccessful murder, in which two high-spirited nations 
might engage. Centuries hence, we IVenchmen and Englishmen might be 


bOMting and Idlling each other still, carrying oat bravefy the Devil'« code 
of honour. 

All our friends took then* share and fought like men in the great field. 
All day long, whilst the women were praying ten miles away, the lines 
of the .daimtless English infantry were receiving and repelling ^he fdrious 
charges of the French horsemen. Guns which were heard at Brus- 
sels were ploughing up their ranks, and comrades falling, and the 
resolute survivors closing in. Towards evening, the attack of the French, 
repeated and resisted so bravely, slackened in its finy. They had other 
foes besides the British to engage, or were preparing for a final oliset. 
It came at last : the columns of the Imperial Guard marched itp the hill 
of Saint Jean, at length and at once to sweep the Englitdi ^^om the 
height which they had maintained all day, and spite of all : unscared by 
the thunder of the artillery, which hurled death from the English line— the 
daik rolling column pressed on and up the hill. It seemed almost to 
crest the eminence, when it began to wave and falter. Then it stopped, 
still facing the shot. Then at last the English troops rushed from the 
post from which no enemy had been able to dislodge them, andtheOuard 
turned and fled. 

No more firing was heard at Brussels — the pursuit rolled miles away. 
The darkness came down on the field and city, and Amelia was praying 
for George, who was lying on his face, dead, with a bullet througli his 



^ HE kind reader must please to re- 
member — while the army is march- 
ing from Flanders, and, after its 
heroie actions there, is advancing 
to take the fortifications on the 
frontiers of France, previous to an 
occupation of that country, — that 
there are a number of persons living 
peaceably in England who have to 
do with the history at present in 
hand, and must come in for their 
share of the chronicle. During the 
time of these battles and dangers, 
old Miss Crawley was living at 
Brighton, very moderately moved 
by the great events that were going 
on. The great events rendered the 
newspapers rather interesting, to be sure, and Briggs read out the Gazette, 
in which Eawdon Crawley's gallantry was mentioned with honour, and his 
promotion to be Captain and Lieutenant-Colonel was presently recorded. 

" What a pity that young man has taken such an irretrievable step in the 
world," his aunt said ; " with his rank and distinction he might have married 
a brewer's daughter with a quarter of a million — ^like Miss Gndns ; or have 
looked to ally himself with the best families in England. He would have 
had my money some day or other ; or his children would — for I 'm not 
in a hurry to go. Miss Briggs, although you may be in a hurry to be 
rid of me ; and instead of that, he is a doomed pauper, with a dancing- 
girl for a wife." 

"Will my dear Miss Crawley not cast an eye of compassion upon 
the heroic soldier, whose name is inscribed in the annals of his country's 
glory?" said Miss Briggs, who was greatly excited by the Waterloo 
proceedings, and loved speaking romantically when there was an occasion. 
** Has not the Captain — or the Colonel as I may now style him — done 
deeds which make the name of Crawley illustrious P" 

•* Briggs, you are a fool," said Miss Crawley : " Colonel Crawley has 
dragged the name of Crawley through the mud. Miss Briggs. Marry a 
drawing-master's daughter, indeed! — ^marry a daim de compagnie — for 
she was no better, Briggs ; no, she was just what you are — only younger, 
and a great deal prettier and cleverer. Were you an accompUce of that 



abandoned wretch, I wonder, of whose vile arts he became a victim, and 
of whom you used to be such an admirer ? Yes, I daresay you were an 
accomplice. But you will find yourself disappointed in my will, I can 
tell you : and you will have the goodness to write to Mr. Waxy, and say 
that I desire to see him immediately." Miss Crawley was now in the 
habit of writing to Mr. Waxy her solicitor almost every day in the week, 
for her arrangements respecting her property were all revoked, and kar 
perplexity was great as to the future disposition of her money. 

The spinster had, however, rallied considerably ; as was proved by the 
increased vigour and frequency of her sarcasms upon Miss Briggs, all 
which attacks the poor companion bore with meekness, with cowardice, 
with a resignation that was half generous, and half hypocritical — with the 
slavish submission, in a word, that women of her disposition and station 
are compelled to show. Who has not seen how women bully women ? 
What tortures have men to endure, comparable to those daily-repeated 
shafts of scorn and cruelty with which poor women are riddled by the 
tyrants of their sex ? Poor victims ! But we are starting from our 
proposition, which is, that Miss Crawley was always particularly annoy- 

. ing and savage when she was rallying from illness — as they say wounds 

. tingle most when they are about to heal. 

While thus approaching, as aU hoped, to convalescence. Miss Briggs 
was the only victim admitted into the presence of the invalid ; yet Miss 

. Crawley's relatives afar off did not forget their beloved kinswoman, and by 
a number of tokens, presents, and kind affectionate messages, strove to 
keep themselves alive in her recollection. 

In the first place, let us mention her nephew, Eawdon Crawley, A 
few weeks. after the famous fight of Waterloo, and after the Gazette had 
made known to her the promotion and gaUantry of that distinguished 
officer, the Dieppe packet brought over to Miss Crawley at Brighton, a 
box containing presents, and a dutiful letter, from the Colonel her nephew. 
In the box were a pair of French epaulets, a Cross of the Legion of 
Honour, and the hilt of a sword — ^relics from the field of battle : and the 
letter described with a good deal of humour how the latter belonged to a 
commanding-officer of the Guard, who having sworn that " the Guard 
died, but never surrendered," was taken prisoner the next minute by a 
private soldier, who broke the Frenchman's sword with the butt of his 
musket, when Eawdon made himself master of the shattered weapon. 
As for the cross and epaulets, they came from a Colonel of French 
cavalry, who had fallen under the aide-de-camp's arm in the battle : and 
Eawdon Crawley did not know what better to do with the spoils than 
to send them to his kindest and most affectionate old friend. .Should 

. he continue to wiite to her from Paris, whither the army was marching ? 
He might be able to give her interesting news from that capital, and 
of some of Miss Crawley's old friends of the emigration, to whom she 
had shown so much kindness during their distress. 

The spinster caused Briggs to write back to the Colonel a gracious 
and complimentary letter, encouraging him to continue his coiTcspondence. 

^ His first letter was so excessively lively and amusing that she should look 
with pleasure for its successors.-;-" Of course I know," she expiained to 


Miss Briggs, " that Bawdon could not write such a good letter any more 
than you could, my poor Briggs, and that it is that dever little wretch of 
a Rebecca, who dictates every word to him; but that is no reason why 
my nephew should not amuse me ; and so I wish to let him understand 
that I am in high good-humour." 

I wonder whether she knew that it was not only Becky who wrote the 
letters, but that Mrs. Bawdon actually took and sent home the trophies — 
which she bought for a few francs, from one of the innumerable pedlars, 
who immediately began to deal in relics of the war. The novelist, who 
knows everything, ImoWs this also. Be this, however, as it may, Miss 
Crawley's gracious reply greatly encouraged our young friends Bawdon 
and his lady, who hoped for the best from their aunt's evidently pacified 
.humour: and they took care to entertain her with many delightful 
letters from Paris, whither, as Bawdon said, they had the good hick to go 
in the track of the conquering army. 

To the rector's lady, who went off to tend her husband's broken 
' collar-bone at the Bectory at Queen's Crawley, the spinster's communi- 
cations were by no means so gracious. Mrs. Bute, that brisk, manag- 
ing, lively, imperious woman, had committed the most fatal of all errors 
with regard to her sister-in-law. She had not merely oppressed her and 
her household — she had bored Miss Crawley : and if poor Miss Briggs 
had been a woman of any spirit, she might have been made happy by 
the commission which her principal gave her, to write a letter to Mrs. 
Bute Crawley, saying that Miss Crawley's health was greatly improved 
since Mrs. Bute had left her, and begging the latter on no account to put 
herself to trouble, or quit her faimly for Miss Crawley's sake. Tliis 
triumph over a lady who had been very haughty aild cruel in her beha- 
viour to Miss Briggs, would have rejoiced most women ; but the truth 
is, Briggs was a woman of no spirit at all, and the moment her enemy 
was discomfited she began to feel compassion in her favour. 

** How silly I was," Mrs. Bute thought, and with reason, "ever to 
hint that I was coming, as I did, in that foolish letter when we sent Miss 
Crawley the guinea-fowls. I ought to have gone without a word to the 
poor dear doting old creature, and taken her out of the hands of that 
ninny Briggs, and that harpy of a femme de chamhre. Oh ! Bute, Bute, 
why did you break your collar-bone ?" 

Why, indeed ? We have seen how Mrs. Bute, having the game in her 
hands, had really played her cards too well. She had ruled over Miss 
Crawley's household utterly and completely, to be utterly and completely 
routed when a favourable opportunity for rebellion came. She and her 
household, however, considered that she had been the victim of horrible 
selfishness and treason, and that her sacrifices in Miss Crawley's behalf 
had met with the most savage ingratitude. Bawdon's promotion, and the 
honourable mention made of his name in the Gazette, filled this good 
Christian lady also with alarm. Would his aunt relent towards him now 
that he was a Colonel and a C.B. P and would that odious Bebecca once 
more get into favour ? The rector's wife wrote a sermon for her husband 
about the vanity of military glory and the prosperity of the wicked, which 
the worthy parson read in his best voice and without understanding one 

u 2 


syllable of it. He had Fiit Crawley for one of his auditors — Pitt, who had 
eome with his two half-sisters, to church, which the old Baronet could now 
by now means be brought to frequent. 

Since the departure of Becky Sharp, that old wretch had given himself 
up entirely to his bad courses, to the great scandal of the county and the 
nmte horror of his son. The ribbons in Miss Horrocks's cap became more 
splendid than ever. The polite families fled the hall and its owner in 
teiTCNr. Sir Pitt went about tippling at his tenants' houses ; and drank 
rum-and-water with the fanners at Mudbury and the neighbouring pkoes 
on market-days. He' drove the family ooach-and-four to Southampton 
with Miss Horrocks inside : and the county people expected, every weel, 
as his son did in speechless agony, that his marriage with her would be 
announced in the provincial paper. It was indeed a rude burthen for Mr. 
Crawley to bear. His eloquence was palsied at the missionary meetings, 
and other religious assemblies in the neighbourhood, where he had been in 
the habit of presiding, and of speaking for hours ; for he felt, wheii he 
rose, that the audience said, ** That is the son of the old reprobate Sir 
Pitt, who is very likely drinking at the public-house at this very moment." 
And once when he was speaking of the benighted condition of the king of 
Timbuctoo, and the number of his wives who were likewise in darkness, 
some tipsy miscreant from the crowd asked, " How many is there at 
Queen's Crawley, Young Squaretoes ?" to the surprise of the platform, 
and the ruin of Mr. Pitt's speech. And the two daughters of the house 
of Queen's Crawley would have been allowed to run utterly wild (for Sir 
Pitt swore that no governess should ever enter into his doors again), had 
not Mr. Crawley, by threatening the old gentleman, forced the latter to 
send them to school. 

Meanwhile, as we have said, whatever individual differences there might 
be between them all. Miss Crawley's dear nephews and nieces were 
unanimous in loving her and sending her tokens of affection. Thus Mrs. 
Bute sent guinea-fowls, and some remarkably fine cauliflowers, and a pretty 
purse or pincushion worked by her darling girls, who begged to keep a 
little place in the recollection of their dear aunt, while Mr. Pitt sent 
peaches and grapes and venison from the Hall. The Southampton coach 
used to carry these tokens of affection to Miss Crawley at Brighton : it 
used sometimes to convey Mr. Pitt thither too : for his differences with Sir 
Pitt caused Mr. Crawley to absent himself a good deal from home now : 
and besides, he had an attraction at Brighton in the person of the Lady 
Jane Sheepshanks whose engagement to Mr. Crawley has been formerly 
mentioned in this history. Her Ladyship and her sisters lived at Brighton 
with their mamma, the Countess Southdown, that strong-minded woman 
so favourably known in the serious world. 

A few words ought to be said regarding her Ladyship and her noble 
family, who are bound by ties of present and future relationship to the 
house of Crawley. Eespecting the chief of the Southdown family, Clement 
William, fourth Earl of Southdown, little need be told, except that his 
Lordship came into Parliament (as Lord Wolsey), under the auspices of 
Mr. Wilberforce, and for a time was a credit to his political sponsor, and 
decidedly a serious young man. But words cannot describe the feelings 


of his admirable mother, when she learned, very shortly after her noble 
husband's demise, that her son was a member of severd. worldly dubs, had 
lost largely at play at Wattiers and the Cocoa Tree ; that he had raised 
money on post-obits, and encumbered the family estate ; that he drove 
four-in-hand, and patronized the ring ; and that he actually had an opera* 
box, where he entertained the most dangerous bachelor company. His 
n^me was only mentioned with groans in the dowager's cirde. 

The Lady Emily was her brother's senior by many years ; and took 
considerable rank in the serious world as author of some of the delightful 
tracts before mentioned, and of many hymns and spiritual pieces. A 
mature spinster, and having given up all ideas of marriage, her love for 
the blacks occupied almost all her feelings. It is to her, I believe, we owe 
that beautiful poem, — 

^ Lead us to some sunny isle, 
Yonder in the western deep ; 
Where the skies for ever smile, 
And the blacks for ever weep/' &c. ' 

She had correspondences with clerical genikBien in most of our East 
and West India possessions; and report says was once attached to 
the Eeverend Silas Homblower, who was tattooed in the South Sea 

As for the Lady Jaae, on whom, as it has been said, Mr. Pitt 
Crawley's aflF«tion had been placed, she was gentle, blushing, silent, 
and timid. In spite of his Mling away, she wept for her brother, and was 
quite ashamed of loving him still. Even yei she used to send him little 
hurried smuggled note% and pop them in the post in private. The one 
dreadful se<^et which weigiked upon her life wa«» tllat she and the old 
housekeeper had been to p«f Southdown a furtiv€ visit 9i his chambers in 
the Albany ; and found Iumi — O the naughty dear abandoned wretch ! 
smoking a cigar with a bottle of Cura9oa before him. She admired her 
sister, she adored her mothei; she thought Mr. Crawley tl^ most delight- 
ful and accomplished of men, after Southdown, that falSen angel : and her 
mamma and sister, who were ladies of the most superior sort, managed 
everything for her, and r^arded her with that amiable pity, of which 
your really superior woman always has such a shaz« to give away. Her 
mamma ordered her dresses, her books, her bonnets, aad her ideas for her. 
She was made to take pony-riK&ig, or piano-exercise, or any otiber sort of 
bodily medicament, according as my Jady Southdown saw meet; and her 
ladyship would have kept ber dm^^Aec in pinafores up to her pnaent age 
of six-and-twenty, but thai; they were thrown o£ wben I^dy Jane was 
presented to Ckieen Charlotte. 

When these ladies first came to their house at Brighton, it was to them 
alone that Mr. Crawley paid his personal visits, contenting himself by leaving 
a card ^ his aunt's house, and making a modest inquiry of Mr. Bowls or his 
assistant footman, with respect to the health of the invalid. When he met 
Miss Briggs coming home from the library with a cargo of novels under 
her arin, Mr. Crawley blushed in a manner quite unusual to him, as he 
stepped forward and shook Miss Crawley's companion by the hand. He 



introduced Miss Briggs to the lady with whom he happened to be walking, 
the Lady Jane Sheepshanks, saying, " Lady Jane, permit me to introduce 
to you my aunt's Kindest friend and most affectionate companion, Miss 
Briggs, whom you know under another title, as authoress of the delightful 
* Lyrics of the Heart,* of which you are so fond." Lady Jane blushwl too 
as she held out a kind little hand to Miss Briggs, and said something veiy 
civil and incoherent about mamma, and proposing to call on Miss Crawley, 
and being glad to be made known to the friends and relatives of Mr. 
Crawley; and with soft dove-Uke eyes saluted Miss Briggs as they 
separated, while Pitt Crawley treated her to a profound courtly bow, such 

as he had used to the Grand Duchess of Pumpernickel, when he was attach^ 
at that court. 

The artful diplomatist and disciple of the Machiavellian Binkie ! It 
was he who had given Lady Jane that copy of poor Briggs's early poems> 


which he remembered to have seen at Queen's Crawley, with a dedication 
from the poetess to his father's late wife ; and he brought the volume with 
him to Brighton, reading it in the Southampton coach, and marking it 
with his own pencil, before he presented it to the gentle Lady Jane. 

It was he, too, who laid before Lady Southdown the great advantages which 
might occur from an intimacy between her family and Miss Crawley, — 
advantages both worldly and spiritual, he said : for Miss Crawley was now ' 
quite alone ; the monstrous dissipation and alliance of his brother Bawdon, 
had estranged her affections from that reprobate young man ; thie greedy 
tyranny and avarice of Mrs. Bute Crawley had caused the old lady to 
revolt against the exorbitant pretensions of that part of the family ; and 
though he himself had held off aU his life from cultivating Miss Crawley's 
friendship, with perhaps an improper pride, he thought now that every 
becoming means should be taken, both to save her soul from perdition, and 
to secure her fortune to himself as the head of the house of Crawley. 

The strong-minded Lady Southdown quite agreed in both proposals of 
her son-in-law, and was for converting Miss Crawley off hand. At her 
own home, both at Southdown, and at Trottermore Castle, this tall and 
awful missionary of the truth rode about the country in her barouche with 
outriders, launched packets of tracts among the cottagers and tenants, and 
would order Gaffer Jones to be converted, as she woidd order Goody Hicks 
to take a James's powder, without appeal, resistance, or benefit of clergy. 
My Lord Southdown, her late husband, an epileptic and simple-minded 
nobleman, was in the habit of approving of everything which his Matilda 
did and thought. So that whatever changes her own belief might undergo 
(and it accommodated itself to a prodigious variety of opinion, taken from . 
all sorts of doctors among the Dissenters) she had not the least scruple in 
ordering all her tenants and inferiors to follow and believe after her. Thus 
whether she received the Eeverend Saunders McNitre the Scotch 
divine ; or the Eeverend Luke Waters the mUd Wesleyan ; or the Reverend 
Giles Jowls the illuminated Cobbler who dubbed himself Reverend as 
Napoleon crowned himself Emperor — the household, children, tenantry 
of my Lady Southdown were expected, to go down on : their knees with 
her Ladyship, and say Amen to the prayers of either Doctor. During these 
exercises old Southdown, on account of his invalid condition, was allowed 
to sit in his own room, and have negus and the paper read to him. . Lady 
Jane was the old Earl's favourite daughter, and tended him and loved him 
sincerely : as for Lady Emily, the authoress of the " Washerwoman of 
Finchley Common," her denunciation of future punishments (at this period, 
for her opinions modified afterwards) were so awful that they used to 
frighten the timid old gentleman her father, and the physicians declared 
his fits always occurred after one of her Ladyship's, sermons. 

" I wiU certainly call," said Lady Southdovm then, in reply to the 
exhortation of her daughter's pretendu^ Mr. Pitt Crawley — "Who is 
Miss Crawley's medical man P" 

Mr. Crawley mentioned the name of Mr. Creamer. 

" A most dangerous and ignorant practitioner, my dear Pitt. I have 
providentially been the means of removing him from several houses : 
though in one or two instances I did not arrive in time. . I could not save 


poor dear General Ghmders, who was dying under the hands of that ignorant 
man — dying. He rallied a little under ihe Podger's pills which I admi* 
nistered to him ; but alas ! it was too late. His death was delightfol, 
however ; and his change was only for ihe better : Creamer, my dear Pitt» 
must leave your aunt." 

Pitt expressed his perfect acquiescence. He too had been carried along 
by the energy of his noble kinswoman, and future mother-in-law. He 
had been made to accept Saunders McNitre, Luke Waters, Giles Jowls, 
Podger's Pills, Bodger's Pills, Pokey's Elixir, every one of her Ladyship's 
remedies spiritual or temporal. He never left her house without canying 
respectfully away with him piles of her quack theology and medidne. O 
my dear brethren and fellow-sojoumers in Vanity Fair, which among you 
does not know and suffer under such benevolent despots ? It is in vain 
you say to them, " Dear Madam, I took Podger's speiafic at your orders 
last year, and believe in it. Why, why, am I to recant and accept the 
Eodger's articles now ? " There is no telp for it ; the faithful proselytizer, if 
she cannot convince by argument, bur^s into tears, and the recusant finds 
himself, at the end of the contest, taking down the bolus, and saying, 
" Well, wen, Eodger's be it." 

" And as for her spiritual state," continued the Lady, " that of course 
must be looked to immediately ; with Creamer about her, she may go off 
any day : and in what a condition, my dear Pitt, in what a dreadM con-> 
dition ! I will send the Reverend Mr. Irons to her instantly. Jane, write 
a line to the Eeverend Bartholomew Irons, in the third person, aiid say 
that I desire the pleasure of his company this evening at -tea at half past 
six. He is an awakening man ; he ought to see Miss Crawley before she 
rests this night. And Emily, my love, get ready a packet of books for Miss 
Crawley. Put up * A Voice from the Flames,' * A Trumpet-warning to 
Jericho,' and the ' Fleshpots Broken ; or, the Converted Cannibal.' " 

" And the ' Washerwoman of Finchley Common,' Mamma," said Lady 
Emily. " It is as well to begin soothingly at first." 

" Stop, my dear ladies," said Pitt the diplomatist. " With every deference 
to the opinion of my beloved and respected Lady Southdown, I think it 
would be quite unadvisable to commence so early upon serious topics with 
Miss Crawley. Eemember her delicate condition, and how little, how very 
little accustomed she has hitherto been to considerations connected with 
her immortal welfare." 

•* Can we then begin too early, Pitt ? " said Lady Emily, rising with six 
little books already in her hand. 

** If you begin abruptly, you will frighten her altogel^er. I know my 
aunt's worldly nature so well as to be sure that any abrupt attempt at 
conversion w3l be the very worst means that can be employed for the 
welfare of that unfortunate lady. You will only frighten and annoy her. 
She will very likely fling the books away, and refose all acquaintance with 
the givers." 

" You are as worldty as Miss Crawley, Pitt," said Lady Emily, tossing 
out of the room, h^ books in her hand. 

" And I need not tell you, my dear Lady Southdown," Pitt continued, 
in a low voice, and without heeding the interruplion, " how fatal a Ultle 


want of gentleness and caution may be to any hopes wliich we may enter- 
tain with regard to the worldly possessions of my aunt. Kemember she 
has seventy thousand pounds ; think of her age, and her highly nervous 
and delicate condition : I know that she has destroyed the wiU which was 
made in my brother's (Colonel Crawley's) favour : it is by soothing that 
wounded spirit that we must lead it into the right path, and not by frighten- 
ing it ; and so I think you will agree with me that — ^that " — 

" Of course, of course," Lady Southdown remarked. " Jane, my love, 
you need not send that note to Mr. Irons. If her health is such that dis- 
cussions fatigue her, we will wait her amendment. I will call upon Miss 
Crawley to-morrow." 

" And if I might suggest, my sweet lady," Pitt said in a bland tone, 
" it would be as well not to take our precious Emily, who is too enthu- 
siastic ; but rather that you should be accompaaied by our sweet and dear 
Lady Jane." 

" Most certainly, Emily would ruin eveiy<teig," Lady Soutluiown said; 
and this time agreed to forego her usual practice, which was, as we have 
said, before she bore down personally upon any individual whom she pro- 
posed to subjugate, to fire in a quantity of tracts upon the menaced party ; 
(as a charge of the French was always preceded by a furious cannonade). 
Lady Southdown, we say, for the sake of the invalid's health, or for the 
sake of her soul's ultimate wdfare, or for the sake of her money, agreed to 

The next day the great Southdown female family carriage, with the 
Earl's coronet and the lozenge (upon which the thi*ee lambs trottani 
argent upon the field vert of the Southdowns, were quartered with sable 
on a bend or, three snuff-mulls gules, the cognizance of the house of 
Binkie), drove up in state to Miss Crawley's door, and the tall serious foot- 
man handed in to Mr. Bowls her Ladyship's cards for Miss Crawley, and 
one likewise for Mss Briggs. By way of compromise. Lady Emily sent in 
a packet in the evening for the latter lady, containing copies of the 
" Washerwoman," and other mild and favourite tracts for Miss B.'s own 
perusal ; and a few for the servants' hall, viz. : " Crumbs from the Pantry;" 
"The Prying Pan and the Eire," and "The Livery of Sin," of a much 
stronger kind. 



HE amiable behaviour of Mr. 
Crawley and lady Jane's kind 
reception of her, highly flattered 
Miss Briggs, who was enabled 
to speak a good word for the 
latter, after the cards of the 
Southdown funily had been pre- 
sented to Miss Crawley. A 
Countess's card left personally 
too for her, Briggs, was not a 
little pleasing to the poor friend- 
less companion. " What could 
Lady Southdownmeanby leaving 
a card upon you^ I wonder, Miss Briggs?" said the republican Miss 
Crawley ; upon which the companion meekly said "that she hoped 
there could be no harm in a lady of rank taking notice of a poor 
gentlewoman," and she put away this card in her work-box amongst her 
most cherished personal treasures. Furthermore, Miss Briggs explained 
how she had met Mr. Crawley walking with his cousin and long-affianced 
bride the day before : and she told how kind and gentle-looking the lady 
was, and what a plain, not to say common, dress she had, aU the articles 
of which, from the bonnet down to the boots, she described and estimated . 
with female accuracy. 

Miss Crawley allowed Briggs to prattle on without interrupting her too 
much. As she got well, she was pining for society. Mr. Creamer, her 
medical man, would not hear of her returning to her old haunts and dissipa- 
tion in London. The old spinster was too glad to find any companionship 
at Brighton, and not only were the cards acknowledged the very next day, 
but Pitt Crawley was graciously invited to come and see his aunt. He 
came, bringing with him Lady Southdown and her daughter. The dowager 
did not say a word about the state of Miss Crawley's soul ; but talked 
with much discretion about the weather : about the war and the downfall 
of the monster Bonaparte : and above all, about doctors, quacks, and the 
particular merits of Dr. Podgers, whom she then patronised. 

During their interview Pitt Crawley made a great stroke, and one which 
showed that, had his diplomatic career not been blighted by early neglect, 
he might have risen to a high rank in his profession. When the Countess 
Dowager of Southdown feU foul of the Corsican upstart, as the fashicm 
was in those days, and showed that he was a monster stained with every 


concdvable crime, a coward and a tyrani not fit to live, one whose fall was 
predicted, &c., Pitt Crawley suddenly took np the cudgels in favour of the 
man of Destiny. He described the First Consul as he saw him at Paris 
at the Peace of Amiens ; when he, Pitt Crawley, had the gratification of 
making the acquaintance of the great and good Mr. Fox, a statesman 
whom, however much he might differ with him, it was impossible not to 
admire fervently — ^a statesman who had always had the highest opinion . 
of the Emperor Napoleon. And he spoke in terms of the strongest 
indignation of the faithless conduct of the allies towards this dethroned . 
monarch, who, after giving himself generously up to their mercy, was 
consigned to an ignoble and cruel banishment, while a bigotted Popish 
rabble was tyrannising over France in his stead. 

This orthodox horror of Bomish superstition saved Pitt Crawley in Lady 
Southdown's opinion, whilst his admiration for Fox and Napoleon raised 
him immeasurably in Miss Crawley's eyes. Her friendship with that 
defunct British statesman was mentioned when we first introduced her in 
this history. A true Whig, Miss Crawley had been in opposition all 
through the war, and though, to be sure, the downfall of the Emperor did 
not very much agitate the old lady, or his ill-treatment tend to shorten 
her life or natural rest, yet Pitt spoke to her heart when he lauded both . 
her idols ; and by that single speech made immense progress in her favour. 

" And what do you think, my dear ?" Miss Crawley said to the young 
lady, for whom she had taken a liking at first sight, as she always did for 
pretty and modest young people ; though it must be owned her affections 
cooled as rapidly as they rose. 

Lady Jane blushed very much, and said " that she did not understand 
politics, which she left to wiser heads than her's ; but though Mamma was, 
no doubt, correct, Mr. Crawley had spoken beautifully." And when the 
ladies were retiring at the contusion of their visit, Miss Crawley hoped 
" Lady Southdown would be so kind as to send her Lady Jane sometimes, if 
she could be spared to come down and console a poor sick lonely old 
woman." This promise was graciously accorded, and they separated upon 
great terms of amity. 

** Don't let Lady Southdown come again, Pitt," said the old lady. " She 
is stupid and pompous like all your mother's family, whom I never could 
endure. But bring that nice good-natured little Lady Jane as often as ever 
you please." Pitt promised that he would do so. He did not tell the 
Countess of Southdown what opinion his aunt had formed of her Ladyship, 
who, on the contrary, thought that she had made a most delightfid and 
majestic impression on Miss Crawley. 

And so, nothing loth to comfort a sick lady, and perhaps not sorry in 
her heart to be freed now and again from the dreary spouting of the 
Beverend Bartholomew Lrons, and the serious toadies who gathered round 
the footstool of the pompous Countess, her mamma. Lady Jane became a 
pretty constant visitor to Miss Crawley, accompanied her in her drives, and 
solaced many of her evenings. She was so naturally good and soft, that 
even Firkin was not jealous of her ; and the gentle Briggs thought her 
friend was less cruel to her, when kind Lady Jane was by. Towards her 


Ladyship Miss Crawley's manners were charming. The old spinster iold her 
a thousand anecdotes about her youth, talking to her in a very different 
strain from that in whieh she had been accustomed to converse with the 
godless little Bebecca; for there was that in Lady Janets innocence which 
rendered light talking impertinence before her, and Miss Crawley was too 
much of a gentlewoman to offend such pii^ty. The young lady herself 
had never received kindness except from this old spinster, and her brother 
and &ther : and she repaid Miss Crawley's engoHmeni by artless sweetness 
and frimdship. 

In the autumn evenings (when Eebeeca was flaunting at Paris, the 
gayest among the gay conquerors there, and our Amelia, our dear wounded 
Amelia, ah ! where was she P) Lady Jane would be sitting in Miss Crawley's 
drawing-room singing sweetly to her, in the twilight, her little simple 
songs and hymns, wlule the sun was setting and the sea was roaring on 
the beach. The old spinster used to wake up when these ditties ceased, 
and ask for more« As for Briggs, and the quantity of tears of happiness 
which she now shed as she pretended to knit, and looked out at the 
splendid ocean darkling before the windows, and the lamps of heaven, 
beginning more biightly to shine — ^who, I say, can measure the happiness 
and sensibility of Briggs P 

Pitt meanwhile in the dining-room, with a pamphlet of the Corn'^aws 
or a Missionary Eegister by his side, took that land of recreation which 
suits romantic and unromantic men after dinn». He sipt Madeira : built 
castks in the air : thought himself a fine fellow : felt himsdf much more 
in love with Jane than he had been any time these seven years, during 
which their liadson had lasted without the slightest impatience on Pitt's 
part — ^and slept a good deal. Wh«i the time for coffee came, Mr. Bowls 
used to enter in a noisy manner, and summon Squire Ktt, who would be 
found in the dark very busy with his pamphlet. 

" I wish, my love, I could get somebody to play picquet with me," 
Miss Crawley said, one night, when this functiotatv made his appearance' 
with the candles and the coffee. ^'Poor Bri^s 0!sn no more play than an 
owl, she is so stupid" (the spinster always took an opportunity of abusing 
Briggs before the servants) ; " and I think I should sleep better if I had 
my game." 

At this Lady Jane blushed to the tips of her Kttk ears, and down to the 
ends of her pretty fingers ; and when Mr. Bowls had quitted the room, 
and the door was quite shut, she said : 

" Miss Crawley, I can play a little. I used to — ^to play a little with 
poor dear papa." 

*' Ccnne axid kiss me. Come and kiss me this instant, you dear good 
little soul," cried Miss Crawley in an ecstacy ; and in this picturesque and 
fiiendly occupation Mr. Pitt found the old lady and the young one, when 
he eame up*^airs with his pamphlet in his hand. How she did blush all 
the evening, that poor Lady Jane ! 

It must not be imagined that Mr. Pitt Crawley's artifices escaped the 
attention of his dear relations at the Eectcay at Queen's Crawley. Hamp- 


slore and Sussex lie very close together, and Mrs. Bute bad friends in tlie 
latter county who took care to inform her of all, and a great deal more 
than all, that passed at Miss Crawley's house at B^hton. Pitt was there 
more and more. He did not come for months together to the Hall, where 
his abominable old father abandoned himself completely to rum and water, 
and the odious society of the Horrocks family. Pitt's sue(%s8 rendered 
the Eector's faimly furious, and Mrs. Bute regretted more (though she 
confessed less) than ever her monstrous fault in so insudting Miss Briggs, 
and in being so haughty and parsimonious to Bowls and Firkin, that 
she had not a single p^son left in Miss Crawley's household to give her 
information of what took place there. '* It was all Bute's eoUar-bone," 
she persisted in saying ; '* if that had not broke, I nev^ would have 1^ 
her. I am a miuiyr to duty and to your odious underical habit of 
hunting, Bute." 

" Hunting ; nonsense 1 It was you that lightened her, Barbara," the 
divine interposed. " You 're a dever woman, but you 've got a devil of a 
temper ; and you 're a screw with your mcmey, Barbara." 

" You 'd have been screwed in gaol, Bute, if I had not kept your 

" I know I would, my dear,'^ said the Bector, good-naturedly. " You 
are a clever woman, but you manj^e too well, you know :" and the pious 
man ec^nsbled himself wilii a big glass of port. 

"What the deuce can she find in that spoony of a Pitt Crawley?" he 
continued. " The fellow has not pluck enough to say Bo to a goose. 
I remember when Eawdon, who is a man and be hanged to him, used to 
flog him round the stables as if he was a whipping-top : and Pitt would go 
howling home to his ma — ha, ha ! Why, either of my boys would wap 
him with one hand. Jim says he's remembered at Oxf(»rd as Miss Crawley 
stiU — the spooney." 

" I say, Barbara," his reverence contiaued, after a pause. 

" What ! " said Barbara, who was biting her nails, and drubbing the 

" I say, why not send Jim over to Brighton to see if he can do any 
thing with the old lady. He's very near getting his degree, you know. 
He's only been plucked twice — so was I— -but h%'s had the advantages of 
Oxford and a university education. He knows some of the best chaps 
there. He pulls stroke in the Boniface boat. He's a handsome feller. 
D — it, ma'am, let's put him on the old woman, hey; and tell him to 
thrash Pitt if he says any think. Ha, ha, ha ! " 

"Jim might go down and see her, certainly," the housewife said; 
adding, with a sigh, " If we could but get one of the girls into the house ; 
but she could never endure them, because they are not pretty 1" Those 
unfortunate and well-educated women made themselves heard from the 
neighbouring drawing-room, where they were thrumming away, with hard 
fingers, an elaborate music-piece on the piano-forte, as their mother spoke ; 
and indeed they were at music, or at backboard, or at geography, or at 
history, the whole day long. But what avail all these accomplishments, in 
Vanity Fair, to girls who are short, poor, plain, and have a bad complexion? 
Mrs. Bute could think of nobody but the Curate to take one of them off 


her hands ; and Jim coming in from the stable at this minute, through 
the parlour window, with a short pipe stuck in his oil-skin cap, he and las 
father fell to talking about odds on the St. Leger, and the colloquy between 
the Eector and his wife ended. 

Mrs. Bute did not argue much good to the cause from the sending of 
her son James as an ambassador, and saw him depart in rather a despairing 
mood. Nor did the young fellow himself, when told what his mission was 
to be, expect much pleasure or benefit from it ; but he was consoled by 
the thought that possibly the old lady would give him some handsome 
remembrance of her, which would pay a few of his most pressing bills at 
the commencement of the ensuing Oxiford term, and so took his }daoe by 
the coach from Southampton, and was safely landed at Brighton on the same 
evening, with his portmanteau, his favourite bull-dog Towzer, and an 
immense basket of farm and garden produce, from the dear Eectory folks 
to the dear Miss Crawley. Considering it was too late to disturb the 
invalid lady on the first night of his arrival, he put up at an inn, and 
did not wait upon Miss Crawley until a late hour in the noon of next day. 

James Crawley, when his aunt had last beheld him, was a gawky lad, at 
that uncomfortable age when the voice varies between an unearthly treble 
and a preternatural base ; when the face not uncommonly blooms out with 
appearances for which Bowland's Elalydor is said to act as a cure ; when 
boys are seen to shave furtively with their sister's scissors, and the sight 
of other young women produces intolerable sensations of terror in them ; 
when the great hands and ankles protrude a long way from garments which 
have grown too tight for them ; when their presence after dinner is at once 
frightful to the ladies, who are whispering in the twilight in the drawing- 
room, and inexpressibly odious to the gentlemen over the mahogany, who 
are restrained from freedom of intercourse and delightful interchange of 
wit by the presence of that gawky innocence ; when, at the conclusion of 
the second glass, papas say, " Jack, my boy, go out and see if the evening 
holds up," and the youth, willing to be free, yet hurt at not being yet a 
man, quits the incomplete banquet. James, then a hobbadehoy, was now 
become a young man, having had the benefits of a university education, 
and acquired the inestimable polish, which is gained by living in a fast set 
at a small college, and ^ntracting debts, and being rusticated, and being 

He was a handsome lad, however, when he came to present himself to 
his aunt at Brighton, and good looks were always a title to the fickle old 
lady's favour. Nor did his blushes and awkwardness take away from it : 
she was pleased with these healthy tokens of the young gentleman's 

He said " he had come down for a couple of days to see a man of his 
college, and — and to pay my respects to you. Ma'am, and my father's and 
mother's, who hope you are well." 

Pitt was in the room with Miss Crawley when the lad was announced, 
and looked very blank when his name was mentioned. The old lady had 
plenty of humour, and enjoyed her correct nephew's perplexity. She 
flsked after all the people at the Rectory with great interest ; and said she 
was thinking of paying them a visit. She praised the lad to his face, and 


imi hd was well-grown and very much improved, and that it was a pity 
Ids sisters had not some of his good looks ; and finding, on inquiry, that 
he had taken up his quarters at an hotel, would not hear of his stopping 
there, but bade Mr. Bowls send for Mr. James Crawley's things instantly; 
" and hark ye. Bowls," she added, with great graciousness, " you will 
have the goodness to pay Mr. James's bill." 

She flung Pitt a look of arch triumph, which caused that diplomatist 
alijaost to choke with envy. Much as he had ingratiated himself with his 
aunt, she had never yet invited him to stay under her roof, and here was 
a young whipper-snapper, who at first sight was made welcome there. 

"I beg your pardon, Sir,'' says Bowls, advancing with a profound 
bow ; " what otel. Sir, shall Thomas fetch the luggage from ? " 

"O, dam," said young James, starting up, as if in some alarm, 

"What 1" said Miss Crawley. 

" The Tom Cribb's Arms," said James, blushing deeply. 

Miss Crawley burst out laughing at this title. Mr. Bowls gave one 
abrupt guffaw, as a confidential servant of the family, but choked the rest 
of the volley ; the diplomatist only smiled. 

" I— I didn't know any better," said James, looking down. ** I 've never 
been here before; it was the coachman told me." The* young story- 
teller! The fact is, that on the Southampton coach, the day previous, 
James Crawley had met the Tutbury Pet, who was coming to Brighton to 
make a match with the Eottingdean Pibber ; and enchanted by the Pet's 
conversation, had passed the evening in company with that scientific man 
and his friends, at the inn in question. 

" I — I 'd best go and settle the score," James continued. " Couldn 't 
think of asking you. Ma'am," he added, generously. 

This delicacy made his aunt laugh the more. 

" Go and settle the bill, Bowls," she said, with a wave of her hand^ 
" and bring it to me." 

Poor lady, she did not know what she had done ! " There — ^there 's a 
little duwg^' said James, looking frightfully guilty. " I 'd best go for him. 
He bites footmen's calves." 

All the party cried out with laughing at this description ; even Briggs 
and Lady Jane, who was sitting mute during the interview between Miss 
Crawley and her nephew ; and Bowls, without a word, quitted the room. 

Still, by way of punishing her elder nephew, Miss Crawley persisted in 
being gracious to the young Oxonian. There were no limits to her kind- 
. ness or her compliments when they once began. She told Pitt he might 
come to dinner, and insisted that James should accompany her in her drive, 
and paraded him solemnly up and down the cliff, on the back seat of the 
barouche. During all this excursion, she condescended to say civil things 
to him : she quoted Italian and French poetry to the poor bewildered 
lad, and persisted that he was a fine scholar, and was perfectly sure he 
would gain a gold medal, and be. a Senior Wrangler. 

"Haw, haw," laughed James, encouraged by these compliments; 
"Senior Wrangler, indeed ;, that 's at the other shop." 

" What is the other shop, my dear child ?" said the la^ly. 


** Senior Wranglers at Cambridge, not Oxford,'* said the scholar, with a 
knowing air ; and would probably hare been more confidential, but that 
suddenly there appeared on the cliff in a tax-cart, drawn by a bang-up pony, 
dressed in white flannel coats, with mother-of-pearl buttons, his friends 
the Tutbury Pet and the Bottingdean Fibber, with three other gentlemen 
of their acquaintance, who all saluted poor James there in the carriage as 
he sate. This incident damped the ingenuous youth's spirits, and no word 
of yea or nay could he be induced to utter during the rest of the drive. 

On his return he found his room prepared, and his portmanteau ready, 
and might haye remarked that Mr. Bowls's countenance, when the latter 
conducted him to his apartment, wore a look of grayity, wonder, and 
compassion. But the thought of Mr. Bowls did not enter his head. He 
was deploring the dreadful predicament in which he found himself, in a 
house full of old women, jabbering French and Italian, and talking poetry 
to him. ** Beglarly up a tree, by jingo ! " exclaimed the modest boy, who 
could not face the gentlest of her sex — ^not even Briggs — ^when she began 
to talk to him ; whereas, put him at Iffley Lock, and he could out-slang 
the boldest bargeman. 

At dinner, James appeared choking in a white neckcloth, and had the 
honour of handing my Lady Jane down stairs, while Briggs and Mr. 
Crawley followed afterwards, conducting the old lady, with her apparatus 
of bundles, and shawls, and cushions. Half of Briggs's time at dinner 
was spent in superintending the invalid's comfort, and in cutting up 
chicken for her fat spaniel. James did not talk much, but he made a point 
of asking all the ladies to drink wine, and accepted Mr. Crawley's chal- 
lenge, and consumed the greater part of a bottle of champagne which Mr. 
Bowls was ordered to produce in his honour. The ladies having with- 
drawn, and the two cousins being left together, Pitt, the ex-diplomatist, 
became very communicative and friendly. He asked after James's career 
at college — ^what his prospects in life were— hoped heartily he would get 
on ; and, in a word, was frank and amiable. James's tongue unloosed 
with the Port, and he told his cousin his life, his prospects, his debts, his 
troubles at the little-go, and his rows with the proctors, filling rapidly 
from the bottles before him, and flying from Port to Madeira with joyous 

" The chief pleasure which my aunt has," said Mr. Crawley, filling his 
glass, " is that people should do as they like in her house. This is Liberty 
Hall, James, and you can't do Miss Crawley a greater kindness than to do 
as you please, and ask for what you will. I know you have all sneered at 
me in the country for being a Tory. Miss Crawley is liberal enough to 
suit any fancy. She is a Eepublican in principle, and despises everything 
like rank or title." 

" Why are you going to marry an Earl's daughter ? " said James. 

" My dear friend, remember it is not poor Lady Jane's fault that she is 
well bom," Pitt replied with a courtly air. " She cannot help being a 
lady. Besides, I am a Tory, you know." 

" O as for that," said Jim, " there 's nothing like old blood ; no, dammy, 
nothing like it. I 'm none of your radicals. I know what it is to be a 
gentleman, dammy. See the chaps in a boat-race ; look at the fellers in a 


fight; aye, look at a dawg killing rats, — wliicli is it wins? the good 
blooded ones. Get some more port, Bowls, old bo^, whilst I buzz this 
bottle here. What was I a saying?** 

** I think you were speaking of dogs killing rats," Pitt remarked mildly, 
handing his cousin the decanter to buzz. 

" KUling rats was I ? Well, Pitt, are you a sporting man ? Do you. 
want to see a dawg as can kill a rat ? If you do, come down with me to 
Topi Corduroy's, in Castle Street Mews, and I '11 show you such a bull- 
terrier as — " 

"Pooh! gammon," cried James, bursting out laughing at his own 
absurdity, — ** you don't care about a dawg or a rat ; it 's all nonsense. 
I'm blest if I think you know the difference between a dog and a duck." 

** No ; by the way," Pitt continued with increased blandness, " it was 
about blood you were talking, and the personal advantages which people 
derive from patrician birth. Here 's the fresh bottle.'* 

" Blood's the word," said James, gulping the ruby fluid down. "Nothing 
like blood. Sir, in bosses, dawgs, and men. Why only last term, just 
before I was rusticated, that is, I mean just before I had the measles, 
ha, ha, — there was me and Kingwood of Christchurch, Bob Bing- 
wood, Lord Cinqbar's son, having our beer at the Bell at Blenheim, when 
the Banbury bargeman offered to %ht either of us for a b9wl of punch. 
I couldn't. My arm was in a sling ; couldn't even take the drag down, — 
a brute of a mare of mine had fell with me only two days before, out with 
the Abingdon, and I thought my arm was broke. Well, Sir, I couldn't 
finish him, but Bob had his coat off at once — ^he stood up to the Banbury 
man for three minutes, and polished him off in four rounds easy. Gad, 
how he did drop, Sir, and what was it? Blood, Sir, all blood." 

" You don't drink, James," the ex-attache continued. " In my time, 
at Oxford, the men passed round the bottle a little quicker than you young 
fellows seem to do." 

" Come, come," said James, putting his hand to his nose and winking 
at his cousin with a pair of vinous eyes, " no jokes, old boy ; no trying it 
on on me. You want to trot me out, but it 's no go. In vino Veritas, old 
boy. Mars, Bacchus, Apollo virorum, hay ? I wish my aunt would send 
down some of this to the governor; it's a precious good tap." 

" You had better ask her," Machiavel continued, " or make the best of 
your time now. What says the bard, 'Nunc vino pellite curas Cras 
ingens iterabimus sequor,' " and the Bacchanalian quoting the above with 
a House of Commons air, tossed off nearly a thimblefull of wine with 
an immense flourish of his glass. 

At the Rectory, when the bottle of port wine was opened after dinner, the 
young ladies had each a glass from a bottle of currant wine. Mrs. Bute 
took one glass of port, honest James had a couple commonly, but as his 
father grew very sulky if he made further inroads on the bottle, the good 
lad generally refrained from trying for more, and subsided either into the 
currant wine, or to some private gin-and-water in the stables, which he 
enjoyed in the company of the coachman and his pipe. At Oxford, the 
quantity of wine was unlimited, but the quality was inferior : but when 
quantity and quality united, as at his aunt's house, James showed that he 



could appreciate them indeed; and hardly needed any of his cousin's 
enoourag^nent in draining off the second bottle supplied by Mr. Bowls. 

When the time for coffee came, however, and for a return to the ladies, 
of whom he stood in awe, the young gentleman's agreeable frankness left 
him, and he relapsed into his usual surly timidity : contenting himself by 
saying yes and no, by scowling at Lady Jane, and by upsetting one cup of 
coffee during the evening. 

If he did not speak he yawned in a pitiable manner, and his presence 
threw a damp upon the modest proceedings of the evening, for Miss 
Crawley and Lady Jane at their piquet, and ^liss Briggs at her work, felt 
that his eyes w^e wildly fixed on them, and were uneasy under that 
maudlin look. 

" He seems a very silent, awkward, bashful lad," said Miss Crawley to 
Mr. Pitt. 

" He is more communicative in men's society than with ladies," Machia- 
vel dryly replied : perhaps rather disappointed that the port wine had not 
made Jim speak more. 

He had spent the early part of the next morning in writing home to 
his mother a most flourishing account of his reception by Miss Crawley. 
But ah ! he little knew what evils the day was bringing for him, and how 
short his reign of favour was destined to be. A circumstanoe which Jim 
had forgotten — a trivial but fatal circumstance — ^had taken place at the 
Cribb's Arms on the night before he had come to his aunt's house. It 
was no other than this — Jim, who was always of a generous disposition, 
and when in his cupe especially hospitable, had in the course of the night 
treated the Tutbury champion and the Boltingdean man, and their friends, 
twice or thrice to the refresliment of gin-and-water — so that no less than 
eighteen glasses of that jQuid at eight-pence per glass were charged in 
Mr. James Crawley's biU. It was not the amount of eight-pences, but 
the quantity of gin which told fatally against poor James's character, when 
his aunt's butler, Mr. Bowls, went down at his mistress's request to pay 
the young gentleman's bill. The landlord, fearing lest the account should 
be refused altogether, swore solemnly that the young gent had consumed 
personally every farthing's worth of the liquor : and Bowls paid the bill 
finally, and showed it on his return home to Mrs. Firkin, who was 
shocked at the frightful prodigality of gin ; and took the biU to Miss 
Briggs as accountant-general ; who thought it her duty to mention the 
circumstance to her principal, Miss Crawley. 

Had he diuvk a dozen bottles of claret the old spinster could have 
pardoned him. Mr. Fox and Mr. Sheridan drank claret. Gentlemen 
drank claret. But eighteen glasses of gin consumed among boxers in an 
ignoble pot-house — it was an odious crime and not to be pardoned readily. 
Everything went against the lad: he came home perfumed from the 
stables, whither he had been to pay his dog Towzer a visit — ^and whence 
he was going to take his friend out for an airing, when he met Miss Crawley 
and her wheezy Blenheim spaniel, which Towzer would have eaten up 
had not the Blenheim fled squealing to the protection of Miss Briggs, 
while the atrocious master of the bull-dog stood laughing at the honible 

'J^4i/: J^a^m.€^^ AiA^y ^uy^ au^. 


This day too the unlucky boy's modesty had likewise forsaken him. 
He was lively and facetious at dinner. During the repast he levelled one 
or two jokes against Pitt Crawley : he drank as much wine as upon the 
previous day : and going quite unsuspiciously to the drawing-room began 
to entertain the ladies there with some choice Oxford stories. He described 
the different pugilistic qualities of Molyneux and Dutch Sam, offered 
playfully to give Lady Jane the odds upon the Tutkury Pet against the 
Hottingdean man, or take them, as her Ladyship cibsae : and crowned the 
pleasantry by proposing to back himself agabfi^ ih»i«B«sin Pitt Crawley, 
either with or without the gloves. " And tt«k *s a fehr offer, my buck," he 
said, with a loud laugh, slapping Pitt on the shouldfir, " and my father 
told me to make it too, and he '11 go hdhres in the bet, ha ha ! " So 
saying, the engaging youth nodded knowingly at peer Miae Briggs, and 
pointed his thumb over his shoulder at Pitt Caraiidey m a Jocular and 
exulting manner. 

Pitt was not pleaaed altogether perhaps, but diiH not .unhappy in the 
main. Poor Jim had hk laaiigh out : and staggered across ihe room with 
his aunt's candle, when the old lady moored to retire, and ofiared to salute 
her with the blandest tipsy smil&t and Im took his own leave and went up- 
stairs to his bed-room perfectly -eaiiBfied with himself and with a pleased 
notion that his aunt's money would 'be left to him in preference to his 
father and aU the oraafcc^ ibis fass^. 

Once up in tke bedflEDCHn, eaie woiM hme thfiogkit he couM not make 
matters worse ; and ^ thk lunluidsy bogr diS. The w»tm was shining 
very pleasantly out tOB ite^sea^ and Jim^ aitautlad: itovtlhe ndndiow by the 
romantic apparaoee of ike oeean and 4he heavens^ ll^iia^ht he would 
farther enjoy ih^m while smokiaig. litdbo% wottld moM the tobacco, 
he thought, if he cumomgly opened iBteimxdow aand logii! his ihead and 
pipe in the keek air. ^his he did: hisEt being in an exci^;^ #Bte, poor 
Jim had forgotten that his doer was opeli aU tls^ tbn% «o 'iliAt the breeze 
blowing inwards and a fine thorough draft being established, the clouds of 
tobacco were carried down-stairs, and arrived with quite undiminished 
fragrance to Miss Crawley and Miss Briggs.- 

That pipe of tobacco finished the business : and the Bute-Crawleys 
never knew how many thousand pounds it cost them. Firkin rushed down- 
stairs to Bowls who was reading out the ** Pire and the Jrying Pan " to 
his aide-de-camp in a loud and ghostly voice. The dreadful secret was 
told to him by Firkin with so. frightened a look, that for the first moment 
Mr. Bowls and hijs young man thought that robbers were in the house ; 
the legs of whom had probably been discovered by the woman under Miss 
Crawley's bed. When made aware of the fact however — ^to rush up-stairs 
at three steps at a time — 'to enter the unconscious James's apartment, 
calling out, " Mr. James," in a voice stifled with alarm, and to cry " For 
Gawd's sake, Sir, stop that 'are pipe," was the work of a minute with 
Mr. Bowls. " O, Mr. James, what 'ave you done," he said in a voice of 
the deepest pathos, as he threw the implement out of the window. " What 
'ave you done. Sir ; Misses can't abide 'em." 

" Missis needn't smoke," said James with a frantic misplaced laugh, 
and thought the whole matter an excellent joke. But his feelings were 




very different in the morning, when Mr. Bowls's young man, who operated 
upon Mr. James's boots, and brought him his hot water to shave that 

beard which he was so anxiously expecting, handed a note into Mr. James 
in bed, in the Ivand writing of Miss Briggs. 

" Dear Sir," it said, " Miss Crawley has passed an exceedingly dis- 
turbed night, owing to the shocking manner in which the house has been 
polluted by tobacco ; Miss Crawley bids me say she regrets that she is too 
unwell to see you before you go — and above all, that she ever induced you 
to remove from the ale-house, where she is sure you will be much more 
comfortable during the rest of your stay at Brighton." 

And herewith honest James's career as a candidate for his aunt's favour 
ended. He had in fact, and without knowing it, done what he menaced 
to do. He had fought his cousin Pitt with the gloves. 

Where meanwhile was he who had been once first favourite for this race 
for money? Becky and Kawdon, as we have seen, were come together 


after Waterloo, and were passing the winter of 1815 at Paris in great 
splendour and gaiety. Eebecca was a good economist, and the price 
poor Jos Sedley had paid for her two horses was in itself sufficient to 
keep their little establishment afloat for a year, at the least ; there was no 
occasion to turn into money " my pistols, the same which I shot Captain 
Marker," or the gold dressing-case, or the cloak linied with sable. Becky 
had it made into a pelisse for herself, in which she rode in the Bois de 
Boulogne to the admiration of all : and you should have seen the scene 
between her and her delighted husband, whom she rejoined after the army 
had entered Cambray, and when she unsewed herself, and let out of her dress 
all those watches, knick-knacks, bank-notes, checks, and valuables, which 
she had secreted in the wadding, previous to her meditated flight from 
Brussells! Tufto was charmed, and Kawdon roared- with delightful 
laughter, and swore that she was better than any play he ever saw, by 
Jove. And the way in which she jockied Jos, and which she described 
with infinite fun, carried up his delight to a pitch of quite insane enthu- 
siasm. He believed in his wife as much as the Erench soldiers in 

Her success in Paris was remarkable. All the French ladies voted her 
charming. She spoke then* language admirably. She adopted at once 
their grace, their liveliness, their manner. Her husband was stupid cer- 
tainly — all English are stupid — and, besides, a dull husband at Paris is 
always a point in a lady's favour. He was the heir of the rich and 
spirituelU Miss Crawley, whose house had been open to so many of the 
Prench noblesse during the emigi'ation. They received the Colonel's wife 
in their own hotels — " Why," wrote a great lady to Miss Crawley, who had 
bought her lace and trinkets at the Duchess's own price, and given her 
many a dinner during the pinching times after the Eevolution — " Why 
does not our dear Miss come to her nephew and niece, and her attached 
friends in Paris ? All the world resoles of the charming Mistress and her 
espQgle beauty. Yes, we see in her the grace, the charm, the wit of our 
dear friend Miss Crawley ! The King took notice of her yesterday at the 
Tuilleries, and we are all jealous of the attention which Monsieur pays her. 
If you could have seen the spite of a certain stupid Miladi Bareacres, 
(whose eagle-beak and toque and feathers may be seen peering over the 
heads of all assemblies) when Madame, the Duchess of Angoul^me, the 
august daughter and companion of kings, desired especially to be presented 
to Mrs. Crawley, as your dear daughter dmdi protegee y and thanked her iu the 
name of Prance, for all your benevolence towards our unfortunates during 
their exile ! She is of all the societies, of all the balls — of the balls — ^yes — of 
the dances, no ; and yet how interesting and pretty this fair creature looks 
surrounded by the homage of the men, and so soon to be a mother 1 To hear 
her speak of you, her protectress, her mother, would bring tears to the eyes 
of ogres. How she loves you ! how we all love our admirable, our respect- 
able Miss Crawley ! " 

It is to be feared that this letter of the Parisian great lady did not by 
any means advance Mrs. Becky's interest with her admirable, her respect- 
able, relative. On the contraiy, the fury, of the old spinster was beyond 
bounds, when she found what was Eebecca's situation, and how auda- 


dously she had mnde use of Miss Crawley's name, to get an entree into 
Parisian society. • Too much shaken in mind and body to compose a letter 
in the French language in reply to that of her correspondent, she dictated 
to Briggs a furious answer in her own native tongue, repudiating Mrs* 
Bawdon Crawley altogether, and warning the public to beware of her as 
a most artful and dangerous person. But as Madame the Duchess of 
X — had only been twenty years in England, she did not understand a 
single word of the language, and contented herself by informing Mrs. 
Bawdon Crawley at their next meeting, that she had received a charming 
letter from that ckhe Mees, and that it was full of benevolent things for 
Mrs. Crawley, who began seriously to have hopes that the spinster would 

Meanwhile, she was the gayest and most admired of Englishwomen : and 
had a little European congress on her reception-night — ^Prussians and Cos- 
sacks, Spaniards and English — all the world was at Paris during this famous 
winter : to have seen the stars and cordons in Kebecca's humble saloon 
would have made all Baker Street pale with envy. Famous warriors rode 
by her carriage in the Bois, or crowded her modest little box at the Opera. 
Bawdon was in the highest spirits. There were no duns in Paris as yet : 
there were parties every day at Veiy's or Beauvilliers' ; play was plentiM 
and his luck good. Tufto perhaps was sulky. Mrs. Tufto had come 
over to Paris at her own invitation, and besides this contretemps, there 
were a score of generals now round Becky's chair, and she might take her 
choice of a dozen bouquets when she went to the play. Lady Bareacres 
and the chiefs of the English society, stupid and irreproachable females, 
writhed with anguish at the success of the little upstart Becky, whose 
poisoned jokes quivered and rankled in their chaste breasts. But she had 
all the men on her side. She fought the women with indomitable courage, 
and they could not talk scandal in any tongue but their own. 

So in fSteSy pleasures, and prosperity, the winter of 181 5-16 passed 
a^ay with Mrs. Bawdon Crawley, who accommodated herself to polite life 
as tf her ancestors had been people of fashion for centuries past — and 
who from her wit, talent, and energy, indeed merited a place of honour 
in Vanity Fair. In the early spring of 1816, Galignani's Journal con- 
tained the following announcement in an interesting comer of the paper : 
" On the 26th of March — the Lady of Lieutenant-Colonel Crawley, of — 
Life Gxiards Green — of a son and heir." 

This event was copied into the London papers, out of which Misa 
Briggs read the statement to Miss Crawley, at breakfast, at Brighton. 
The intelligence, expected as it might have been, caused a crisis in the 
affairs of the Crawley family. The spinster's rage rose to its height, 
and sending instantly for Pitt, her nephew, and for the Lady Southdown, 
from Brunswick Square, she requested an immediate celebration of the 
marriage which had been so long pending between the two , families. 
And she announced that it was her intention to allow the young couple a 
thousand a year during her lifetime, at the expiration of which the bulk 
of her property would be settled upon her nephew and her dear niece. 
Lady Jane Crawley. Waxy came down to ratify the deeds — ^Lord 


Southdown gave away his sister — she was married by a Bishop, and not 
by the Eev. Bartholomew Irons — ^to the disappointment of the irregular 

When they were married — Pitt would have liked to take a hymeneal tour 
with his bride, as became people of their condition. But the affection of 
the old lady towards Lady Jane had grown so strong, that she fairly 
owned she could not part with her favourite. Pitt and his wife came 
therefore, and lived with Miss Crawley : and (greatly to the annoyance of 
poor Pitt, who conceived himadtf a most injured character — being subject 
to the humours of his aunt on one side and of his mother-in-law on the 
other,) Lady Southdown, from her neighbouring house, reigned over the 
whole family — ^Pitt, Lady Jane, Miss Crawley, Briggs, Bowb, Firkin, and 
all. She pitilessly dosed thwn with her tracts and her medicine : she 
dismissed Creamer, she installed Eodjgers, and soon stripped Miss Crawley 
of even the semblance of authority. The poor soul grew so timid that 
she actually left off bullying Briggs any more, and clung to her niece, 
more fond and more terrified every day. Peace to thee, kind and selfish, 
vain and generous old heathen ! — ^We shall see thee no more. Let us 
hope that Lady Jane supported her kindly, and led her with gentle hand 
out of the busy atruggle of Vanity Fair. 



HE news of the great fight of 
Quatre Bras and Waterloo 
reached England at the same 
time. The Gazette first pub* 
lished the result of the two 
battles ; at which glorious in- 
telligence all England thrilled 
with triumph and fear. Par- 
ticulars then followed; and 
after the announcement of the 
victories came the list of the 
wounded and the slain. Who 
can tell the dread with which 
that catalogue was opened and 
read ! Fancy, at every village 
and homestead almost through 
the three kingdoms, the great 
news coming of the battles of 
Flanders, and the feelings of exultation and gratitude, bereavement and 
sickening dismay, when the lists of the regimental losses were gone 
through, and it became known whether the dear friend and relative 
had escaped or had fallen. Anybody who will take the trouble of 
looking back to a tile of the newspapers of the time, must, even now, 
feel at second-hand this breathless pause of expectation. The list of 
casualties are carried on from day to day : you stop in the midst as in a 
story which is to be continued in our next. Think what the feelings must 
have been as those papers followed each other fresh from the press ; and if 
such an interest could be felt in our country, and about a battle where but 
twenty thousand of our people were engaged, think of the condition of 
Europe for twenty years before, where people were fighting, not by thou- 
sands, but by millions ; each one of whom as he struck his enemy wounded 
horribly some other innocent heart far away. 

The news which that famous Gazette brought to the Osbomes gave a 
dreadful shock to the family and its chief. The gu-ls indulged unrestrained 
in their grief. The gloom-stricken old father was still more borne down 
by his fate and sorrow. He strove to think that a judgment was on the 
boy for hi^ disobedience. He dared not own that the severity of the 
sentence frightened him, and that its ftilfilment had come too soon upon 
his curses. Sometimes a shuddering terror struck him, as if he had been 
the author of the doom which he had called down on his son. There was 


cliance -before of reconciliation. The boy's wife might have died; or he 
might have come back and said, Father I have sinned. But there was no 
hope now. He stood on the other side of the gulf impassable, haunting 
his parent with sad eyes. He remembered them once before so in a fever, 
when every one thought the lad was dying, and he lay on his bed speech- 
less, and gazing with a dreadful gloom. Good God ! how the father clung 
to the doctor then ; and with what a sickening anxiety he followed him : 
what a weight of grief was off his mind when, after the crisis of the fever, 
the lad recovered, and looked at his father once more with eyes that recog- 
nized him. But now there was no help or cure, or chance of reconcile- 
ment : above all, there were no humble words to soothe vanity outraged 
and furious, or bring to its natural flow the poisoned, angry blood. And 
it is hard to say which pang it was tore the proud father's heart most 
keenly — ^that his son should have gone out of the reach of his forgive- 
ness, or that the apology which his own pride expected should have 
escaped him. 

Whatever his sensations might have been, however, the sterA old man 
would have no confidant. He never mentioned his son's name to his 
daughters ; but ordered the elder to place all the females of the establish- 
ment in mourning ; and desired that the male servants should be similarly- 
attired in deep black. All parties and entei'tainments, of course, were to 
be put off. No communications were made to his future son-in-law, whose 
marriage-day had been fixed; but there was enough in. Mr. Osborne's 
appearance to prevent Mr. Bullock from making any inquiries, or in any 
way pressing forward that ceremony. He and the ladies whispered about 
it under their voices in the drawing-room sometimes, whither the father 
never came. He remained constantly in his own study ; the whole front 
part of the house being closed until some time after the completion of the 
general mourning. 

About three weeks after the 18th of June, Mr. Osborne's acquaintance, 
Sir William Dobbin, called at Mr. Osborne's house in Kussell Square, with 
a very pale and agitated face, and insisted upon seeing that gentleman. 
Ushered into his room, and after a few words, which neither the speaker 
nor the host understood, the former produced from an inclosure a letter 
sealed with a large red seal. " My son. Major Dobbin," the Alderman 
said, with some hesitation, " dispatched me a letter by an officer of the 
— ^th, who arrived in town to-day. My son's letter contains one for you, 
Osborne." The Alderman placed the letter on the table, and Osborne 
stared at him for a moment or two in silence. His looks frightened the 
ambassador, who, after looking guiltily for a little time at the grief-stricken 
man, hurried away without a farther word. 

The letter was in George's well-known bold hand-writing. It was that 
one which he had written before day-break on the 16th of June, and just 
before he took leave of Amelia. The great red seal was emblazoned with 
the sham coat of arms which Osborne had assumed from the Peerage, with 
" Pax in bello " for a motto ; that of the ducal house with which the vain 
old man tried to fancy himself connected. The hand that signed it would 
never hold pen or sword more. The very seal that sealed it had been 
robbed fron George's dead body as it lay on the field of battle. The 


father knew nothing of this, but sat and looked at the letter in terrified 
vacancy. He almost fell when he went to open it. 

Have yon ever had a diffetence with a dear friend? How his letters, 
written in the period of love and confidence, sicken and rebuke you! 
What a dreary mourning it is to dwell upon those vehement protests of 
dead aflFection ! What lying epitaphs they make over the corpse of love ! 
What dark, cruel comments upon Life and Vanities 1 Most of us hare 
got or written drawers full of them. They are closet-skelettms which we 
keep and shun. Osborne trembled long, before the letter from his dead son. 

The poor boy's letter did not say much. He had been too proud to 
acknowledge the tenderness which his heart felt. He only said, that on 
the eve of a great battle, he wished to bid his father farewell, and solemnly 
to implore his good offices for the wife — ^it might be for the child — ^whom 
he left behind him. He owned with contrition that his irregularities and 
extravagance had already wasted a large part of his mother's little fortune. 
He thanked his father for his former generous conduct ; and he promised 
him, that if he fell on the field or survived it, he would act in a manner 
worthy of the name of Greorge Osborne. 

His English habit, pride, awkwardness perhaps, had prevented him 
from saying more. His father could not see the kiss George had placed on 
the superscription of his letter. Mr. Osborne dropped it with the bitterest, 
deadliest pang of balked affection and revenge. His son was still beloved 
and unforgiven. 

About two months afterwards however, as the young ladies of the 
family went to church with their father, they remarked how he took a 
different seat from that which he usually occupied when he chose to 
attend divine worship ; and that from his cushion opposite, he looked up 
at the wall over their heads. This caused the young women likewise 
to gaze in the direction towards which the father's gloomy eyes pointed : 
and they saw an elaborate monument upon the wall, where Britannia was 
represented weeping over an urn, and a broken sword, and a oouchant 
lion, indicated that the piece of sculpture had been erected in honour of a 
deceased warrior. The sculptors of those days had stocks of such funereal 
emblems in hand ; as you may see still on the walls of St. Paul's, which 
are covered with hundreds of these braggart heathen allegories. There 
was a constant demand for them during the first fifteen years of the 
present century. 

Under the memorial in question were emblazoned the well known and 
pompous Osborne arms ; and the inscription said, that the monument was 
" Sacred to the memory of George Osborne, Junior, Esq., late a Captain 
in his Majesty's — th regiment of foot, who fell on the 18th of June, 1815, 
aged 28 years, while fighting for his king and country in the glorious 
victory of Waterloo. Dulce et decorum est pro patrid mori,'' 

The sight of that stone agitated the nerves of the sisters so much, that 
Miss Maria was compelled to leave the church. The congregation made 
way respectfully for those sobbing girls clothed in deep black, and pitied 
the stem old father seated opposite the memorial of the dead soldier. 
" Will he fi)rgive Mrs. George ? " the girls said to themselves as soon as 
their ebullition of grief was over. Much conversation passed too among 


tlie acquaintances of the Osborne family, who knew of the rupture between 
the son and father caused by the former's marriage, as to the chance of a 
reconciliation with the young widow. There were bets among the 
gentlemen both about RusseU Square and in the City. 

If the sisters had any anxiety regarding the possible recognition of 
Amelia as a daughter of the family, it was increased presently, and towards 
the end of the autumn, by their father's announcement that he was going 
abroad. He did not say whither, but they knew at once that his steps 
would be turned towards Belgium, and were aware that George's widow 
was still in Brussels. They had pretty accurate news indeed of poor 
Amelia from Lady Dobbin and her daughters. Our honest Captain had 
been promoted in consequence of the death of the second Major of the 
regiment on the field ; -and the brave O'Dowd, who had distinguished 
himself greatly here as upon all occasions where he had a chance to show 
his coolness and valour, was a Colonel and Companion of the Bath. 

Very many of the brave — ^th, who had suflfered severely upon both days 
of action, were still at Brussels in the autumn, recovering of their wounds. 
The city was a vast military hospital for months after the great battles ; 
and as men and officers began to rally from their hurts, the gardens and 
places of public resort swarmed with maimed warriors old and young, 
who, just rescued out of death, fell to gambling, and gaiety, and love- 
making, as people of Vanity Fair will do. Mr. Osborne found out some 
of the — ^th easily. He knew their uniform quite well, and had been 
used to foUow all the promotions and exchanges in the regiment, and 
loved to talk about it and its officers as if he had been one of the number. 
On the day after his arrival at Brussels, and as he issued from his hotel, 
which faced the park, he saw a soldier in the well-known facings, reposing 
on a stone-bench in the garden, and went and sate down trembling by the 
wounded convalescent man. 

" Were you in Captain Osborne's company ? " he said, and added, after 
a pause, " he was my son. Sir." 

The man was not of the Captain's company, but he lifted up his 
unwounded arm and touched his cap sadly and respectfully to the haggard 
broken-spirited gentleman who questioned him. " The whole army didn't 
contain a finer or a better officer," the soldier said. " The sergeant of 
the Captain's company (Captain Raymond had it now), was in town 
though, and was just well of a shot in the shoulder. His honour might 
see Mm if he liked, who coidd tell him anytlung he wanted to know about 
— about the — ^'s actions. But his honour had seen Major Dobbin no 
doubt, the brave Captain's great Mend; and Mrs. Osborne, who was 
here too, and had been very bad, he heard everybody say. They say she 
was out of her mind like for six weeks or more. But your honour laiows 
all about that — ^and asking your pardon " — ^the man added. 

Osborne put a guinea into the soldier's hand, and told him he should 
have another if he would bring the sergeant to the Hotel du Pare ; a 
promise which very soon brought the desired officer to Mr. Osborne's 
presence. And the first soldier went away ; and after telling a comrade 
or two how Captain Osborne's father was arrived, and what a free-handed 
generous gentleman he was, they went and made good cheer with drink 


and feasting, as long as the gaineas lasted wluch had come from the prond 
purse of the mourning old father. 

In the Serjeant's company, who was also just convalescent, Osborne 
made the journey of Waterloo and Quatre Bras, a journey which 
thousands of his countrymen were then taking. He took the Sergeant 
with him in his carriage, and went through both fields under his guidance. 
He saw the point of the road where the regiment marched into action 
on the 16th, and the slope down which they drove the French cavalry 
who were pressing on the retreating Belgians. There was the spot where 
the noble Captain cut down the French officer who was grappling with the 
young Ensign for the colours, the Colour-Sergeants having been shot 
down. Along this road they retreated on the next day, and here was the 
bank at which the regiment bivouacked under the rain of the night of the 
seventeenth. Further on was the position which they took and held during 
the day, forming time after time to receive the charge of the enemy's 
horsemen, and lying down under shelter of the bank from the furious 
French cannonade. And it was at this declivity when at evening the 
whole English line received the order to advance, as the enemy fell back 
after his last charge, that the Captain hurraying and rushing down the 
hill waving his sword, received a shot and fell dead. " It was Major Dobbin 
who took back the Captain's body to Brussels," the Sergeant said, in a 
low voice, " and had him buried, as your Honour knows." The peasants 
and relic-hunters about the place were screaming round the pair, as the 
soldier told his story, offering for sale all sorts of mementoes of the fight, 
crosses, and epaulets, and shattered cuirasses, and eagles. 

Osborne gave a sumptuous reward to the Sergeant when he parted with 
him, after having visited the scenes of his son's last exploits. His burial 
place he had akeady seen. Indeed he had driven thither immediately 
after his arrival at Brussels. George's body lay in the pretty burial- 
. ground of Lacken, near the city ; in which place, having once visited it on 
a party of pleasure, he had lightly expressed a wish to have his grave 
made. And there the young officer was laid by his friend, in the uncon- 
secrated comer of the garden, separated by a little hedge from the temples 
and towns and plantations of flowers and shrubs, under which the Boman 
Catholic dead repose. It seemed a humiliation to old Osborne to think 
that his son, an English gentleman, a Captain in the famous British army, 
should not be found worthy to lie in ground where mere foreigners were 
buried. Which of us is there can tell how much vanity lurks in our 
warmest regard for others, and how selfish our love is ? Old Osborne 
did not speculate much upon the mingled nature of his feelings, and how 
his instinct and selfishness were combating together. He firmly believed 
that everything he did was right, that he ought on all occasions to have 
his own way — and like the sting of a wasp or serpent his hatred rushed 
out armed and poisonous against anything like opposition. He was 
proud of his hatred as of everything else. Always to be right, always to 
trample forward, and never to doulat, are not these the great qualities with 
which dullness takes the lead in the world ? 

As after the drive to Waterloo, Mr. Osborne's carriage was nearing the 
gates of the city at sunset, they met another open barouche, in which 


were a couple of ladies and a gentleman, and by the side of which an 
officer was riding. Osborne gave a start back, and the Sergeant, seated 
with him cast a look of surprise at his neighbour, as he touched his cap 
to the officer, who mechanically returned his salute. It was Amelia, with 
the lame young Ensign by her side, and opposite to her her faithful friend 
Mrs. O'Dowd. It was Amelia, but how changed from the fresh and 
comely girl Osborne knew. Her face was white and thin. Her pretty 
brown hair was parted under a widow's cap — ^the poor child. Her eyes 
were fixed, and looking nowhere. They stared blank in the face of 
Osborne, as the carriages crossed each other, but she did not know him ; 
nor did he recognise her, until looking up, he saw Dobbin riding by her, 
and then he knew who it was. He hated her. He did not know how 
much until he saw her there. When her carriage had passed on, he 
turned and stared at the Sergeant, with a curse and defiance in his eye, 
cast at his companion, who could not help looking at him — as much 
as to say. " How dare you look at me ? Damn you : I do hate her. 
It is she who has tumbled my hopes and all my pride down." " Tell 
the scoundrel to drive on quick," he shouted with an oath, to the lackey 
on the box. A minute afterwards, a horse came clattering over the pave- 
ment behind Osborne's carriage, and Dobbin rode up. His thoughts had 
been elsewhere as the carriages passed each other, and it was not until he 
had ridden some paces forward that he remembered it was Osborne who 
had just passed him. Then he turned to examine if the sight of her 
father-in-law had made any impression on Amelia, but the poor girl did 
not know who had passed. Then William, who daily used to accompany 
her in his drives, taking out his watch, made some excuse about an 
engagement which he suddenly recollected, and so rode off. She did not 
remark that either: but sate looking before her, over the homely landscape 
towards the woods in the distance, by which George marched away. 

" Mr. Osborne, Mr. Osborne ! " cried Dobbin, as he rode up and held 
out his hand. Osborne made no motion to take it, but shouted out once 
more and with another curse to his servant to drive on. 

Dobbin laid his hand on the carriage side. " I will see you. Sir," he 
said. " I have a message for you." 

"From that woman? " said Osborne, fiercely. 

" No," replied the other, " from your son ; " at which Osborne fell back 
into the comer of his carriage, and Dobbin allowing it to pass on, rode 
close behind it, and so through the town until they reached Mr. Osborne's 
hotel, and without a word. There he followed Osborne up to his apart- 
ments. George had often been in the rooms; they were the lodgings 
which the Crawleys had occupied during their stay in Brussels. 

" Pray, have you any commands for me. Captain Dobbin, or, I beg 
your pardon, I should say Major Dobbin, since better men than you are 
dead, and you step into their ahoeSy* said Mr. Osborne, in that sarcastic 
tone which he sometimes was pleased to assume. 

" Better men are dead," Dobbin replied. •' I want to speak to you 
about one." 

"Make it short, Sir," said the other with an oath, scowling at his 


"I am here as his densest Mend," the Mtyar resumed, ''and the 
executor of his wilL He made it before we went into action. Are you 
aware how small his means are, and of the straitened circumstances of 
his widow ? " 

" I don't know his widow, Sir," Osborne said. " Let her go back to 
her father." But the gentleman whom he addressed was determmed to 
remain in good temper, and went on without heeding the interruption. 

"Do you know. Sir, Mrs. Osborne's condition? Her life and her 
reason almost have been shaken by the blow which has fallen on her. It 
is very doubtful whether she will rally. There is a chance left for her 
however, and it is about this I came to speak to you. She will be a 
mother soon. Will you visit the parent's offence upon the chfld's head? 
or will you forgive the child for poor Greorge's sake ? " 

Osborne broke out into a rhapsody of seSf-praise and imprecations. By 
the first, excusing himself to his own conscience for his conduct ; by the 
second, exaggerating the undutifuluess of George. No father in all 
England could have behaved more generously to a son, who had rebelled 
against him wickedly. He had died without even so much as confessing 
he was wrong. Let him take the consequences of his undutifiilness and 
folly. As for himself, Mr. Osborne, he was a man of his word. He 
had sworn never to speak to that woman or to recognise her as his son's 
wife. '' And that 's what you may tell her," he concluded with an oath ; 
" and that 's what I will stick to to the last day of my life." 

There was no hope from that quarter then. The widow muat live on 
her slender pittance, or on such aid as Jos could give her. '' I might tell 
her, and she would not heed it," thought Dobbin sadly: for the poor 
girl's thoughts were not here at all since her catastrophe, and stupified 
under the pressure of hi^ soirow, good and evil were alike indifferent 
to her. So, indeed, were even friendship and kindness. She received 
them both uncomplainingly^ and having accepted them, relapsed into 
her grief. 

Suppose some twelve months aft^ the above conversation took place 
to have passed in the life of our poor Amelia. She has spent the first 
portion of that time in a sorrow so profound and pitiable, that we who 
have been watching and describing some of the emotions of that weak 
and tender heart, must draw back in the presence of the cruel grief under 
which it is bleeding. Tread silently round the hapless couch of the poor 
prostrate soul. Shut gently the door of the dark chamber, wherein she 
suffers, as those kind people did who nursed her through the first months 
of her pain, and never left her until heaven had sent her consolation. A 
day came — of almost terrified delight and wonder — ^when the poor widowed 
girl pressed a child upon her breast, — a child, with the eyes of George 
who was gone — ^a little boy, as beautiful as a cherub. What a miracle it 
was to hear its first cry ! How she laughed and wept over it — ^how love, 
and hope, and prayer woke again in her bosom as the baby nestled there. 
She was safe. The doctors who attended her, and had feared for her life 
or for her brain, had waited anxiously for this crisis before they could 
pronounce that either was secure. It was worth the long months of doubt 

QyV^^a/^l^ dy^a^lAy^^c^^^iJ . 



and dread which the persons, who had constantly been with her, had 
passed, to see her eyes once more beaming tenderly upon them. 

Our Mend Dobbin was one of them. It was he who brought her back 
to England and to her mother's house ; when Mrs. O'Dowd, receiving a 
peremptory summons from her Colonel, had been foreed to quit her 
patient. To see Dobbin holding the infant, and to heto: Amelia's laugh of 
triumph as she watched him, would have done any man good who had a 
sense of humour. William was the godfather of the child, and exerted his 
ingenuity in the pui'chase of cups, spoons, pap-boats, and corals for this 
little Christian. 

How his mother nursed him, and dressed him, and lived upon him ; how 
she drove away all nurses, and would scarce allow any hand but her own 
to touch him; how she considered that the greatest favour she could 
confer upon his godfather. Major Dobbin, was to allow the Major 6cca- 
sionally to dandle him, need not be told here. This child was her being. 
Her existence was a maternal caress. She enveloped the feeble and 
unconscious creature with love and worship. It was her life which the 
baby drank in from her bosom. Of nights, and when alone, she had 
stealthy and intense raptures of motherly love, such as God's marvellous 
care has awarded to the female instinct — joys how far higher and lower 
than reason — blind beautiful devotions which only women's hearts know. 
It was William Dobbin's task to muse upon these movements of Amelia's, 
and to watch her heart ; and if his love made him divine almost all the 
feelings which agitated it, alas ! he could see with a fatal perspicuity that 
there was no place there for him. And so, gently, he bore his fate, knowing 
it, and content to bear it. 

I suppose Amelia's father and mother saw through the intentions of the 
Major, and were not ill-disposed to encourage him ; for Dobbin visited 
their house daily, and stayed for hours with them, or with Amelia, or with 
the honest landlord, Mr. Clapp, and his family. He brought, on one 
pretext or another, presents to everybody, and almost every day; and 
went with the landlord's little girl who was rather a favourite with 
Amelia, by the name of Major Sugarplums. It was this little child who 
commonly acted as mistress of the ceremonies to introduce him to Mrs. 
Osborne. She laughed one day when Major Sugarplums' cab drove up to 
Fulham, and he descended from it, bringing out a wooden horse, a drum, 
a trumpet, and other warlike toys, for little Georgy, who was scarcely six 
months old, and for whom the articles in question were entirely premature. 

The child was asleep. "Hush," said Amelia, annoyed, perhaps, at the 
creaking of the Major's boots; and she held out her hand ; smiling because 
William could not take it until he had rid himself of liis cargo of toys. 
" Go down stairs, little Mary," said he presently to the child, " I want to 
speak to Mrs. Osborne." She looked up rather astonished, and laid down 
the infant on its bed. 

" I am come to say good-bye, Amelia," said he, taking her slender little 
white hand gently. 

" Gt)od-byeP and where are you going?" she said, with a smile. 

" Send the letters to the agents," he said ; " they will forward them ; 
for you will write to me, won't you ? I shall be away a long time." 


" I *11 write to you about Georgy/* she said. " Dear William, how good 
you have been to him and to me. Look at him I Isn't he like an angel? 

The little pink hands of the child closed mechanically round the honest 
soldier's finger, and Amelia looked up in his face with bright maternal 
pleasure. The cruellest looks could not have wounded him more than that 
glance of hopeless kindness. He bent over the child and mother. He 
could not speak for a moment. And it was with all his strength that he 
could force himself to sav a God bless you, "God bless you/* said Amelia^ 
and held up her face and kissed him. 

" Hush 1 Dont wake G^orgy ! " she added, as William Bobbin went to 
the door with heavy steps. She did not hear the noise of his cab-wheels 
as he drove away : she was looking at the child, who was laughing in his